Between 2003 and 2009, waiting time spent in emergency rooms increased from 46.5 minutes to 58.1 minutes. While there are some instances that require the care of an emergency room, it is often preferable to visit an after hours urgent care center for minor injuries and illnesses.
Despite how easy it is to visit an urgent care center, it can sometimes be a challenge knowing when it is required. To help you determine when to visit urgent care facilities, here are a few of the services that are provided.
Common Illness and Injury Treatment
If you experience a minor cut, burn, scrape, or sprain, a low-cost health clinic is a viable option for you. These maladies are often treated in emergency rooms when they could easily be brought to urgent care centers for treatment at a lower cost and shorter waiting time.
If you need testing done, after hours urgent care can complete lab work for you. This is especially important for those seeking confidential STD testing. Contrary to popular belief, fast STD testing is available through urgent care. Not only is it less expensive and fast, urgent care offers anonymous STD testing.
Preventative Health Care
Routine services are always offered at urgent care clinics. These include vaccinations, school, yearly, and sports physicals, OBGYN exams, and even drug screenings. If you can't make it to your primary care physician for a simple test or checkup, it's a good idea to get checked out at urgent care to be safe.
Symptoms of Illness
If you're experiencing symptoms of an illness and are unsure how to go about treating it, you can go to urgent care. Cold and flu symptoms are always good reasons to see a doctor, but illness doesn't always strike during your physician's operating hours. Symptoms such as swollen glands, rashes, sore throats, and headaches can all be examined at an urgent care facility.
It can be tough to know when to visit the doctor, but if you're sick and need treatment, these are all issues that can be treated at an urgent care clinic. Don't wait to seek treatment!