Advanced urgent care

What does treatment at an urgent care center cost? Perhaps surprisingly, a trip to an urgent care center may set you back less than a trip to the emergency room at your local hospital for the same condition. Certain injuries, such as a gunshot would, open fracture, or heart attack clearly require the emergency room.

Other times it can be difficult to decide whether an illness or injury deserves immediate attention. You may wonder if it can probably wait, at least until your primary care physician has an opening. Thankfully, urgent care costs less than some other options, and the clinics are usually open during convenient times. For example, parents know that before work or school, as well as the weekends are the worst times to have a steadily progressing illness.

So what time is your local urgent care clinic open? It is good information to have for when you need it quickly. According to one national survey, about two-thirds of clinics are open before 9:00 am. And unlike your primary care physician, they are often open on Saturdays (45.7%) and even Sundays (31%). People do not fall ill at the most convenient time because there is really never a good time to be laid up in bed. At times, an illness progresses from the easily dismissed cold, to something more severe. An itch in your throat becomes a sore throat that lasts longer than three days. A cough that becomes phlegmy.

Upper respiratory infections may be mild or may become bronchitis or even pneumonia. There are actually three groups of people who should go to the doctor when experiencing flu-like symptoms: the elderly, small children, and those with compromised immune systems. Children especially seem to fall sick over the weekend when physicians are scarce. There are home remedies for common illnesses, but if it is a bacterial infection only a prescription can really cure it.

Over 95% of urgent care centers have physicians on staff. Even though walk-ins will see a doctor, the cost is likely less than expected. Most insurance providers cover urgent care costs with only a deductible payment needed if applicable. Even so, some statistics show that examination and lab fees for the same illness can differ as much as $200 to $500 between an emergency room visit and a visit to urgent care. A large bill on top of prescription costs and the stress of the illness or injury is not an ideal outcome for any patient.

Take the time today to look up your local urgent care clinic and the hours they keep. Urgent care costs are frequently lower than going to an emergency room. When your doctor cannot see you or a loved one right away, it is nice to know there is somewhere you can go. When you add in the statistically lower wait times, lower cost, and decent hours, the choice is obvious.

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