When we or someone we care for is sick or needs medical attention, we want the best care possible in the shortest amount of time. For this reason, urgent care facilities are trending in healthcare and more Americans are choosing it over the emergency room. There are many reasons for this shift in healthcare preference. Here are just a few reasons why you should consider urgent care the next time you need medical help.
No appointment needed.
Most urgent care clinics are on a “walk-in” basis, meaning an appointment is not required in order to receive care. For this reason, patients do not have to plan out when they can come in. They can simply show up and be been.
Just about 60% of all urgent care facilities have a 15 minute or less wait time to see a physician. Physicians are on site at all times at 65% of these urgent care centers. Furthermore, the majority of urgent care clinics are open until 7:00 p.m. or later on weeknights. More than 66% of centers are open before 9:00 a.m. and a large number open on Saturdays and Sundays. This provides convenient access to care for more individuals in less time than at the emergency room.
Less wait time.
According to The Urgent Care Association of America, 15 minutes or less is the average wait-time and about 80% of those visits last less than an hour. In an emergency department of most hospitals, this level of service and efficiency is unheard of.
The cost of seeing a physician at a medical urgent care facility will be much more affordable than seeing a physician in an emergency room. The price, in many cases, is similar to that you may pay at a doctor’s office. Co-pays tend to be significantly lower at an urgent care facility, influencing patients to choose them over an ER.
Now that you know urgent care clinics can see you without an appointment, have flexible hours, less wait time than the ER, and cost less, what other reasons do you need to choose urgent care for your medical needs. Keep in mind that while urgent care is a valid choice for most nonlife-threatening injuries, ER is still a viable option for medical emergencies. The next time you find yourself needing to seek medical attention, ask yourself which is the best option for the situation?