Print Posted on 12/15/2016 in Urgent Care

What Is Urgent Care

What Is Urgent Care

Urgent care centers are walk-in clinics that provide us the required outpatient medical care we need when we are unable to reach our primary care physicians or when we do not wish to visit the ER. The services provided here cover a broad spectrum like treating health issues like strep throat, uti, cut or wounds, eye or ear ailments, providing immunizations and medical services needed for travel and immigration purposes. These centers are capable of performing simple laboratory tests and X-rays but do not have the same capabilities as the ER. Urgent care centers are also useful for tourists or when you are out of town for either personal or professional visits and need medical attention. These visits are also covered by most insurance companies. The co-pays associated with urgent care center visits are either same or little more when compared to PCP visit and less when compared to the amount you need to pay when you visit an Emergency Room. 

The American Academy of Urgent Care Medicine describes Urgent Care Medicine as having components of both Family medicine and Emergency Medicine. The doctors at these centers have vast and comprehensive knowledge which allows them to address a wide array of medical issue and at the same time, ask the patients to see a specialist if needed. These centers have extended timings – they are open even after 5 PM and weekends too, which make these centers the perfect place to go to when we experience issues that are not life-threatening but require immediate medical attention.

The concept of urgent care is not new to the health industry. Urgent care centers have been around since early 1980s but have seen a rapid growth recently. According to the Urgent Care Association of America, there has been a growth of about 300 centers every year from 2008 -2011, with the numbers almost doubled since then and the Urgent Care Centers see between 71,136,000 and 160,056,000 patient visits each year.

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