Everyone suffers from health issues or injury or wounds sometimes, and many Americans today visit health center such as a 24 hour walk in clinic, 24 hour emergency care, or other emergency centers. What are reasons to go to the emergency room? Or what might send someone to urgent care? An afflicted person may find a site for themselves online, or a responsible adult may perform a quick online search with a PC or smart phone for an nearby medical center such as “24 hour emergency clinics near me Los Angeles CA” or “childrens urgent care Burlington VT.” The reasons to go to the emergency room are varied, as are the reasons to visit an urgent care center. A person might even look up “reasons to go to the emergency room” if a relative has a chronic health condition that may someday result in a medical emergency. “reasons to go to the emergency room” can be looked up as a precaution, but so can “reason to visit urgent care,” especially if the person is unsure about the difference between the two. But in fact, some clinics aim to be a hybrid model that offers both. This should be kept in mind when looking up local medical sites for oneself or a nearby victim.
Reasons to Go to the Emergency Room
Most often, if a person is suffering from a life-threatening injury, chronic condition, or illness, they have to be taken to emergency care right away, and this may include a hospital’s emergency room, or ER, or a hybrid clinic that offers both urgent and medical care, and taking a victim to such a site on time can save a life. This is mainly what sets emergency care apart from urgent care, and the reasons to go to the emergency room are often quite severe, contrasting with urgent care issues. A victim may be taken to the emergency room, for example, if they suffered from bullet or stab wounds, or if they have broken arms or legs. A person may also be admitted into urgent care if they have serious chest pain or difficulty breathing, which can soon threaten a life and lead to other health complications. Head wounds or eye injuries also call for a visit to emergency care, where the doctors and physicians will have the training and equipment needed to save a life.
Emergency care is not a catch-all, however, and is best saved for life-threatening issues such as the ones listed above. Many emergency care patients today, possibly over half of them, could have in fact gotten their treatment from urgent care instead. An exception to this is the hybrid model of clinic, which can handle any patient.
Urgent Care Today
Why might a patient go to urgent care clinic? If their health issue is not life-threatening, a walk-in clinic is their best option, and there are many thousands of these clinics found across the United States. They tend to be independent or belong to small networks, and they are staffed with nurse practitioners and physicians who can deal with everyday illness or wounds among their patients. Such clinics, if they are running smoothly, can see about three patients per hour, and a visitor to such a clinic can expect a wait time of about 15 minutes or so. Many of these clinics accept various healthcare insurance policies, and most of them also have pharmacies on hand to refill drug prescriptions. Some such clinics are in fact retail clinics, meaning that they are found inside major retailers like Wal-Mart, Target, or Walgreens, and may have similar hours of operations.
What can be treated at clinics? Many different ailments. Four out of five clinics treat bone fractures, and most can deal with ankle or wrist sprains as well. The staff can provide stitches and bandages for shallow cuts, and they may help with broken fingers or toes. Upper respiratory issues are a common problem among urgent care clinic patients, and these clinics can also provide medicine for relief from the common cold and flu during influenza season. Patients may also get medicine for food poisoning or ointment or lotions for skin rashes or allergies.