The typical emergency room visit is far from enjoyable for the vast majority of people. After all, the typical emergency room visit entails a great deal of waiting and time spent. Unless you have truly emergent medical condition, it is all too likely that you’ll spend up to one hour of your emergency room visit just sitting in the waiting room – if not even longer than that.
In addition to this, an emergency room visit is likely to be quite hugely expensive as well. Whether or not you have medical insurance, your emergency room visit will typical end up costing you a good chunk of change. It is not uncommon, after all, for an emergency room visit to culminate in a bill totaling $1,000 or even more. For those without medical insurance or any form of healthcare, such a bill in the aftermath of an emergency room visit can be truly devastating indeed.
Fortunately, urgent care centers throughout the country are beginning to provide a viable alternative to the typical emergency room visit. After all, up to 65% of all cases seen in the emergency room – and no less than 44% of them – could have easily been treated in an urgent care center setting instead. In addition to this, a scant 3% of all urgent care center cases must be transferred to a local ER and turn into an emergency room visit. To the surprise of many people who might not be all too familiar with the urgent care setting, urgent care centers can provide incredibly comprehensive medical care.
After all, four urgent care locations out of every five can diagnose and treat fractures, showing a great deal of medical aptitude and ability in doing so. In addition to this, many will treat ankle sprains over the course of the day, as 25,000 ankle sprains occur on a daily basis. Of course, effective treatment and emergency care can be provided for illnesses as well, from ear infections to UTIs to bronchitis and beyond.
In addition to this, urgent care centers can often even provide preventative medical care. The flu shot is quite important for just about every single person to get, and is not something to be taken lightly. In fact, everyone who is above the age of six months should be getting the flu shot on a yearly basis, unless they are not able to for a valid medical reason. Fortunately, urgent care centers make this easy, providing flu shots at what amounts to be a very low cost.
And urgent care centers are also ideal for those who are looking to save time and avoid the long waits necessary to get emergency room treatment and care – even for relatively minor medical concerns. Fortunately, this is not the case in the typical urgent care center. In fact, more than 90% of all urgent care centers (around 92% of them, to be just a little bit more specific) have wait times that are no greater than a mere half of an hour. And in up to 60% of all urgent care centers, comfortably over half, the average wait time does not even exceed 15 minutes. This means that most people who seek care in the average urgent care center will be in and out the door all within the span of just one single hour. This is, of course, something of an impossibility when getting emergency room treatment.
Fortunately, more and more people have access to these urgent care locations than ever before. Already, there are more than 7,000 such facilities throughout the country, up from only just over 6,000 in the recent year of 2015. And more people than ever are taking advantage of such services. As a matter of fact, the data that has been gathered on the subject more than supports this, with more than one quarter of all people having visited at least one urgent care location over the last couple of years.
At the end of the day, there is no discounting the importance of the typical urgent care location. In recent years, urgent care centers have become better and more expansive than ever, something that will continue.