As a patient, it's difficult to know whether your symptoms require a trip to the emergency room or if they can be treated at an urgent care facility. This conundrum often causes unnecessary stress for patients in need of medical care. However, understanding the differences between these two medical facilities can help you determine the best course of action in an emergency. In this blog post, we'll explore the key differences between urgent care and emergency care and help you make an informed decision.
Urgent Care Centers
Urgent care centers offer many of the same services as a primary care physician's office but with more flexibility. They provide non-life-threatening care for illnesses and injuries that require prompt attention but aren't severe enough to warrant a trip to the emergency room.
Urgent care centers have shorter wait times and are available outside regular office hours. If you're experiencing a mild sore throat, earaches, cuts, minor burns, or other non-life-threatening ailments, then it's best to visit an urgent care center instead of the ER.
The Emergency Room
The emergency room should only be used in life-threatening emergencies that require immediate attention. If you're experiencing severe chest pain, seizures, difficulty breathing, loss of consciousness, profuse bleeding, or other severe symptoms, call 911 or get to an ER quickly.
ERs have more specialized equipment and a wide range of doctors available for emergency care. They are equipped to handle the most critical and urgent health conditions, such as cardiac arrest, stroke, and severe infections.
Key Differences Between Urgent Care Centers and Emergency Rooms
One of the key differences between urgent care and emergency rooms is the cost factor. ERs provide specialized care, but they come at a much higher cost than urgent care facilities. On average, the cost of a visit to the emergency room is three times higher than an urgent care. If you don't have insurance, this could be a significant financial burden.
Most health insurance plans offer coverage for both urgent care and ER visits. However, the coverage costs may vary. Many insurance plans require you to pay a higher fee or co-pay for emergency room visits.
Committed to Our Community Since 2017
Choosing between going to the emergency room and an urgent care center isn't always an easy decision. However, understanding the differences between the two could mean a more efficient and effective way of receiving care. If you're experiencing non-life-threatening symptoms, it's best to go to an urgent care center. Urgent care centers are quicker, cost less, and can handle more minor health conditions. But if you're experiencing severe symptoms or life-threatening symptoms, head to the emergency room.
Since 2017, our team at Superior Urgent Care has administered the highest level of medical care to patients in Keller and Saginaw, TX. We are proud to be a veteran-owned and operated company offering urgent and general medical treatments for individuals, families, and employers. From non-emergency medical problems to minor injuries to physicals and more, we are sure you will find the services you are looking for at our conveniently located offices.
A few of the benefits our patients can expect to receive at our clinic include:
- Same-day appointments
- On-site laboratory
- Virtual consultations
- High-quality services
- Little wait time
- COVID-19 testing