General Article

Understanding the Urgent Care Option

Every day thousands of people suffer from minor injuries or illnesses. For many, it seems the only option is an expensive and time-consuming trip to the emergency room. However, over the last several decades urgent care clinics have been gaining popularity as a more accessible alternative. Many of these clinics offer around the clock services, but some simply have extended hours beyond those of personal physicians. Appointments are optional, and most insurance is accepted.

Urgent care facilities can be found in many areas, from crowded downtown New York City to urgent care Converse County, WY. These facilities are becoming the go-to option for businesses for drug tests, physicals, or job-related injuries. Most urgent care facilities have the capability of treating injuries as serious as bone fractures in a few hours, along with other types of sprains, eye irritation, or skin rashes.

The size of urgent care clinics lends to a more personal feel. When a doctor’s appointment seems too long a wait, parents can opt to take their children to a clinic for sicknesses such persistent fever, vomiting, or diarrhea. Dehydration, sore throat, upper respiratory ailments or a worsening migraine could also be reasons to visit a local urgent care facility. When you’re feeling ill and don’t know if it’s wise to go to work or to a social function, having your ailment properly diagnosed can be beneficial not only to yourself but to others you may come in contact with.

When visiting an urgent care facility, remember to bring valid identification and any insurance information. Always tell the doctor about your current regimen of medications, both prescribed and over-the-counter, or if you have any allergies. This information will help the physicians to treat you safely since they don’t have the same access to your medical history as your personal physician.

Clinics have various payment options. Some clinics have a fee which must be paid at the time of treatment. There may also be fees for a physical or vaccines. Your insurance information will be submitted, and any treatments not covered will be billed to you. Any insurance co-payments will be due when services are rendered.

Urgent care centers are becoming more and more common, with around 10,000 now in the U.S. This is good news for hospital emergency rooms, who can focus on more serious injuries and illnesses. Every day thousands of maladies are treated by these local healthcare facilities. Back pain, urinary tract infections, and sprained ankles are part of life in the United States. The evolution of urgent care is going a long way towards meeting the common needs of many patients.

In 2004 the Urgent Care Association of America (UCAOA) was formed to help ensure all urgent care centers have the resources and training to offer the most efficient, up-to-date services. Since that time urgent care has continued to make progress as its own specialized organization. Many thousands of patients can truly be thankful for this localized addition to American Healthcare.