Different medical situations call for different medical facilities. Emergency rooms, hospitals, ordinary clinics and urgent care clinics all have their place. It’s helpful to know exactly where to go when you or a family member needs medical attention. Here’s one way: Familiarize yourself with the medical situations commonly dealt with in urgent care clinics. By doing so, it’s possible to avoid:
1) Unnecessary and expensive visits to the ER
2) Waiting for hours at an ordinary clinic when you need assistance now Here are 10 of the most common medical situations dealt with by doctors and nurses on staff at urgent care clinics.
Bone fractures — Fractures are significant but common injuries, and it’s rarely necessary to visit the ER when a patient has suffered one. Urgent care clinics regularly diagnose and treat fractures.
Sprained ankles and knees — These common injuries can happen while playing sports or hiking. They can also result from slips and falls. Your local urgent care clinic is well-equipped to deal with them.
Minor cuts and burns — If the cut or burn is severe, you need to get to the ER immediately. But in many cases, these injuries are not life-threatening and can be treated quickly and effectively at the urgent care clinic.
Car accident injuries — If you’ve been involved in a car accident, the symptoms can be deceptive. Whether or not you’re in a lot of pain, getting checked out at urgent care can is a good preemptive move.
Infection — Ear infections, urinary tract infections, yeast infections and other common infections are common reasons to seek treatment at an urgent care clinic.
Cold and flu — This is a situation where (the vast majority of the time) a visit to the ER is unnecessary. You do, however, want a fast diagnosis so you can be treated. Urgent care is a good option for this.
Strep throat — This common condition often requires bed rest and antibiotics. Staff at an urgent care clinic will be able to test and treat strep throat.
Conjunctivitus — Also known as pink eye, this condition results in discomfort and redness in one or both eyes. It rarely affects vision, but is contagious. Urgent care is a good place for treatment.
Migraine headaches — Many people who suffer migraines simply deal with the pain, or use medications (over-the-counter or prescription) to deal with them. It is, however, also possible to be treated for migraine at an urgent care clinic.
Other common reasons for visiting urgent care include mono, bronchitis, abdominal and other unexplained pains, diarrhea and swelling. It’s important remember that staff at urgent care clinics (often a combination of MDs and NPs) are highly trained and knowledgeable, and they know when someone needs to visit to the ER. But if you’re in doubt, call ahead to the clinic and explain your situation to the front desk. Otherwise, if you need medical treatment but you (or the patient) is not in immediate danger, heading straight for an urgent care clinic is a good move—especially if you’re dealing with one of the situations listed above. We hope you’ve found this post informative, and we’re here to help. Please feel free to leave questions or comments in the box below.