Urgent care centers offer affordable and convenient treatment for non-life threatening conditions. You need not stay in pain until your primary doctor is available or keep waiting in an emergency room for the more serious cases to be handled. In this article, we delve into the things that you need to consider when choosing the right urgent care center near you.
Which urgent care center is near me
Most of the times, you need immediate care. You want to choose an urgent care center near you in terms of location. The hours of operation go hand in hand with location. There are over 9,000 urgent care centers in the US. 55% of these are located in suburban areas, 25% among urban populations and 20% in rural areas. Quick Stop Urgent Care near me, is not so difficult to find.
Do they accept insurance?
If the center is out-of-network for your insurance plan, it will cost you more out-of-pocket. Inquire about all costs, including tests, examinations, casting broken bones, and x-rays. If they are necessary for your diagnosis, how much will it cost you? Are they covered by your insurance plan, Medicaid or Medicare? Inquire whether it is possible to get cash-pay discounts and get a cost estimate even before you visit the facility.
Urgent care facilities are usually cheaper when compared to what you would pay for a normal doctor’s visit. If you have an insurance plan or the treatment required is simple, then urgent care centers should be way cheaper regarding cost. If you are uninsured, most centers will expect you to pay in full before leaving the facility.
Do not forget to take your insurance card, photo ID and a list of current medications, if you are on some.
What needs can the facility take care of?
You need to find out how well equipped the facility is. If you need laboratory tests or x-rays, do they have all the equipment? Who are the providers? Are they qualified and experienced? Will you be bringing a minor or a senior citizen? Can they treat children or senior citizens?
How much is the wait time?
Usually, patients at urgent care facilities will be seen on a first come first serve basis. In less than 30 minutes, you can be diagnosed, treated, and be on your way home. This will, however, depend on what you are suffering from. If you have a broken bone that is being cast or need other services like x-rays and lab tests, it could take longer. Emergency rooms treat the serious conditions first. The average wait time is 2 hours 15 minutes.
Some centers allow you to schedule online appointments. You will be notified several minutes in advance when the doctor is ready to see you. This helps to reduce your waiting time. You just need to arrive at the facility 5 minutes or so when the doctor is ready to see you.
All in all
Despite the fact that urgent care centers are convenient and affordable, with short wait times, they should not replace emergency situations. Only use the facilities in non-life threatening conditions. It may also be important to follow up with your primary doctor. They better understand your medical history and may adjust treatments accordingly, as well as monitor your progress or recovery.