The first place most of us go when we’re sick or unwell is to our family doctor. They’re usually the best source of treatment. Primary doctors know you, they understand your medical history and know what medications you’re taking. However, getting an appointment to see them is not always easy. In fact, sometimes it’s almost impossible. A combination of busy clinics, limited hours and a lack of openings on evenings or weekends can make getting an appointment extremely difficult.
Urgent care centers can help. These clinics occupy the space that your primary care doctor can’t always fill. They’re open outside of business hours, offer quick comprehensive care and no appointment is necessary. So here are the top five reasons you should visit an urgent care center.
1 – The average wait time is 45 minutes
Emergency room wait times can range anywhere from 4 to 12 hours. All emergency room departments work on a triage system. Treatment is prioritized by attending those that are most unwell, with true life-threatening conditions. So inevitably, going to the ER with a sprained ankle or broken bone will put you at the bottom of the list. Although your illness is important to you, it likely doesn’t meet the standard of life-threatening. So wait times are usually a few hours.
Urgent care centers will see you right away. The average wait time for urgent care center is around 45 minutes.
2 – Urgent care centers treat more than you think
Urgent care centers act like a mini emergency department but without the wait times and general chaos of an ER. Urgent care centers do not treat medical emergencies but they treat just about everything from bee stings to urinary tract infections. The list of minor emergencies they handle includes:
- Broken bones, strains and sprains
- Colds and flus
- Vomiting or diarrhea
- Ear infections, sinusitis or pink eye
- Cuts or burns
- Minor wounds
- Immunizations and vaccinations
- Work-related physicals
3 – Urgent care centers are open after-hours and on weekends
Urgent care centers usually operate outside of normal business hours, including evenings and weekends. Urgent care centers give you the opportunity to see a doctor without compromising other parts of your personal daily schedule or time.
4 – Because sometimes you’re just not able to get an appointment to see your doctor
We’ve all been there: You’re unexpectedly hit by a stomach bug, have sprained an ankle or can’t rid of a chest infection. You call your doctor for an urgent appointment but the earliest they can see you is in a few days or maybe a week. Urgent care centers offer same-day walk-in appointments with typical wait times of approximately 45 minutes. Great for the times when you just can’t get a quick appointment to see your doctor.
5 – Diagnostics
Urgent care centers offer state-of-the art diagnostic testing, such as rapid testing for common illnesses. Patients who need to have simple x-rays can do so immediately. Urgent care centers offer a number of diagnostic and in-house pharmacy services in one location. There is no need to go to multiple locations for one visit.
Urgent care facilities are a great option if you are unable to see your family doctor immediately. They’re open out of hours, have almost no wait times and offer a quick, safe and efficient alternative. At A+ Family Urgent Care, we are not here to take you away from your regular doctor; we are here to compliment them and provide services when they cant.