Americans catch approximately 1 billion colds annually. It is likely that some of these colds will strike outside normal doctors office hours. If this is the case, do not suffer while waiting. There are plenty of urgent care facilities close by.
If you have an immediate medical need, you are not alone. Approximately 3 million patients in the United States visit and urgent care center each week. When you visit an urgent care facility for a non life threatening, yet urgent medical need, you are helping to reduce the wait times in emergenccy rooms who are treating life threatening conditions. According the CDC, 48 percent of adult ER patients, who were not sick enough to be admitted to the hospital, stated that they went to the ER because their doctor offices were closed.
By choosing an immediate care center, you are probably also reducing your own wait time. A survey conducted by the Urgent Care Association of America shows that 57 percent of patients will waait under 15 minutes to be seen. They also state that 80 percent of the visits last less than 60 minutes. This certainly makes urgent care facilities sound much more appealing than waiting hours to be seem in and emergency room.
The list of benefits for urgent care facilities goes on and on. They are all open later hours than your regular doctors office, and often times you can find a 24 hour urgent care near you. It is not uncommon for urgent care facilities to even be open on Sundays. You can sometimes even have more treatments here than at your regular doctors office. Most often, they will treat sprains, strains, fractures, upper respiratory illness, GI conditions like food poisoning, lacerations, and concussions. Many places even have x ray machines, and do laboratory testing such as an STD test, or blood work.
With all of the benefits of urgent care facilities for everyone, there is no excuse not to research one near you. Do not spend hours with a sick, screaming child in the ER when you could be seen quickly at any hour of the day or night. The medical care is almost always top notch, and you will be feeling better in no time.