Important Information About Urgent Care
If you have not visited an emergency room for urgent care many times, then you might be wondering how these clinics work and when you should choose to go to them. It is important to know the facts about these centers so that you will be better able to make an informed decision. If you have a minor emergency, a full-service emergency room can help. These centers can also offer vaccinations and lab work at any time.
Bring the right information
Unlike with doctors’ offices, emergency rooms for urgent care services do not maintain records of patient’s medical history. Because of this, it is extremely important for patients to bring all of the necessary medical documentation each time the patients visit. This will help speed up the patient’s treatment.
The information that patients should bring includes health insurance records and any prescription medications that are being taken. Having a list of any diagnosed medical conditions is also important. If an individual is bringing a minor who is not their child, then a parental authorization form is also important to have. Because the clinic does not have a relationship with the patient, a patient should bring in a photo ID every time. This will help to verify the patient’s identity. Patients will also need to make co-pays or payments at the time of the appointment.
Emergency rooms for urgent care are not hospitals
Patients who have life-threatening conditions should not go to the emergency room for urgent care services. These types of clinics can help provide treatments for strep throat, colds, burns, urinary tract infections, minor allergic reactions and other similar conditions. However, for major medical emergencies, patients should go to the hospital. This can include situations such as:
- Trouble breathing
- Chest pain
- Severe headaches
- Severe vomiting
- Broken bones sticking out of the skin
Full-service emergency rooms for urgent care services do not have the necessary equipment to deal with these major issues. It can even be dangerous to go to an emergency room for these types of problems. The emergency room will send the patient to the hospital anyway and the patient will have wasted precious time.
Choosing the right time to go
While patients can go to an emergency room for urgent care at any time, these centers can be busier at certain times. This can include nights, weekends and times when the doctor’s office is closed, such as holidays. Individuals who need urgent care but can wait may want to consider calling the emergency room to determine what the estimated wait time is. This can help patients avoid having long wait times at the emergency room.
Visit an emergency room for minor conditions
An emergency room can be more affordable and convenient than doctors’ offices. Knowing when to choose them can help you make a life-saving decision. Full-service emergency rooms can be better than going to your doctor because you do not need to wait to make an appointment and go in.
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