Seeing a medical professional to get healthcare is hugely important when any serious medical problem arises, but seeing such a medical professional can be difficult for a number of different reasons. For one thing, general care doctors who work for private practices tend not to be open during the weekend or particularly late into the evening. For some people, seeing a general care doctor is difficult due to a lack of insurance.
Such people often think that their only chance of seeing a medical professional is to go to the local emergency room. But while emergency rooms are of course ideal for real emergency situations, the wait time for a non emergent patient is likely to be at least an hour long, if not even considerably longer than that. In addition to this, patients in the emergency room often end up owing a huge amount of money, sometimes even more than $1,000 in total, if not even considerably more money than that for visits that are relatively minor, all things considered.
Fortunately, urgent care locations have become to provide a viable alternative for people to see a medical professional if they are not able to make an appointment with a general care practitioner, no matter what the reason might be. And urgent care centers are on the rise, with more than 7,000 of them now open all throughout the United States, a growth of nearly 1,000 urgent care locations over the time span of just one single year. Nowadays, the typical urgent care center is likely to see up to three million patients over the course of just one week, and urgent care locations all throughout the country employ at least 20,000 medical professionals like doctors and the like.
Urgent care centers with a qualified medical professional on staff is far more than ideal, at least in comparison to the typical emergency room found all throughout the country. For instance, the typical wait time at more than 90% of all urgent care centers does not even exceed a mere half of an hour. In addition to this, more than half of all urgent care locations – around 60% of them, to be just a little bit more exact – have average wait times of no greater than 15 minutes (though this is likely to vary at least a little bit from urgent care center to urgent care center).
In addition to this, the typical urgent care center (and whatever medical professional is currently on staff) will be able to treat a wider variety of conditions than many people realize. In fact, only about 3% of all urgent care center cases must be transferred at some point to the local emergency room. Otherwise, quite intensive treatment can be provided by a medical professional right in the urgent care itself.
For instance, as many a 80% of all urgent care centers found in this country can provide both diagnosis and treatment for fractures, provided that these fractures are not too complex or compounded. In addition to this, nearly three quarters of all urgent care locations will be able to administer IV fluids as well, should they be deemed necessary for whatever reason. In addition to even this, minor wound repair, such as stitches, can typically be performed by a medical professional here in the United States.
Aside from the above mentioned, the typical urgent care locations are also able to diagnose and treat a number of infections as well. Ear infections, for instance, are quite commonplace among children, though they can typically be treated with relative ease with a simple course of antibiotics. In addition to ear infections, urinary tract infections are typically also seen quite frequently in urgent care locations all throughout the country – after all, there are more than eight million of them diagnosed over the course of just one year here in the United States alone, let alone in other parts of the world where they are also likely quite commonplace.
For many people, the option of the urgent care center is a hugely important thing, one that allows access to care from a medical professional.