Urgent care is a special type of health clinic, in that it allows patients to walk in right off the street without making an appointment beforehand. There are currently 20,000 physicians who practice what is known as Urgent Care Medicine, and they take care of an estimated 3 million patients who visit urgent care centers each week. These walk in clinics offer patients a number of important medical services, and this article will take a look at a few of them.
- The Flu Shot: One important medical service that urgent care clinics provide for patients is access to the annual flu shot. This is a vaccination that is given every year, typically during the fall and winter months, to prevent people from catching the flu virus that sweeps the country during this time. Anyone who wants to get the flu shot can come into the urgent care clinic at any time to receive it, no appointment necessary. This is a great benefit for those who live life on the go and don’t have the time it can take to schedule an appointment.
- Travel Vaccinations: Another important medical service that urgent care clinics provide for patients is access to essential travel vaccinations. These are shots that are typically given when one is preparing to travel overseas to an area where they might be exposed to diseases they might not typically encounter at home. This can include being vaccinated against several strains of hepatitis, tetanus, and in extreme cases, smallpox, just to name a few examples. These shots needs to be given a certain amount of time before departure, to allow time for the vaccines to become effective in the body, and visiting urgent care provides the ideal time and place to get them done.
- X-Ray Services: A third important medical service that urgent care clinics can provide for patients is X-ray services. These are typically used when patients come in with severe bruising and suspect that some bones may have been fractured or broken. Four out of five urgent care centers provide fracture care, which means that if a fractured bone is discovered, the medical professionals on staff can begin the process of treating the injury.
- Sports Physicals: And finally, a fourth important medical service that urgent care clinics can provide for patients is sports physicals. These are complete physical examinations that can be given to individuals, sometimes younger patients, but always, who want to participate in some type of team sport. Most, if not all sports require that anyone who wants to participate needs to take a sports physical beforehand. The purpose of such a physical is to check one’s overall health to make sure there are no underlying problems that would make participating in sports a problem. Upon request, medical professionals at urgent care can perform a sports physical for anyone who needs one.
In conclusion, there are several important medical services that urgent care can provide. These services include the flu shot, travel vaccinations, X-ray services, and sports physicals. This represents just a fraction of the services that urgent care can provide for all of its patients.