Should You Visit an Urgent Care Center?

Symptoms of broken bone

If you’ve driven through a suburban area in the last few years, you’ve probably noticed the presence of a new type of walk in medical clinic, likely located in an easily-accessed area like a shopping center. These clinics, called urgent care centers, are gradually spreading across the United States, with an estimated 9,000 existing urgent care clinics looking to open another branch or expand. While still a relatively new addition to the American health care industry, they are already helping to reduce pressure on local emergency rooms and doctors offices, which can often face an overwhelming number of patients. Could you family take advantage of an urgent care facility’s medical services? Read on to find out!

When it comes to treating non-life-threatening medical conditions, urgent care facilities offer a convenient alternative to emergency rooms. Urgent care centers are typically required to be managed by doctors who are licensed to provide medical care in the U.S., and offer a variety of services, including patient evaluations, prescriptions for antibiotics and pain medications, and even X-ray services to diagnose fractures, sprains, and other bone-related issues. Urgent care centers also have a reputation for offering quick, convenient service: the Urgent Care Association of America reports that over 80% of patients wait 15 minutes or less for treatment, and another 80% of patient visits are completed within an hour or less.

Urgent care centers offer a number of advantages to patients with non-critical injuries and medical conditions. In fact, most urgent care facilities allow and even encourage walk in appointments, and many are open 24 hours a day. By offering these services, emergency rooms and doctors offices are often relieved of a significant number of patients, allowing them to offer better care for seriously injured patients. So the next time you or your family experiences a medical condition that requires immediate care, but is not life-threatening, don’t wait: visit your nearest urgent care center.

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