Illnesses, infections, and other serious medical conditions don’t always happen when primary care facilities are open, or when your doctor has an open appointment slot. Do you know what an Urgent Care Center is for? Whatever your situation may be, you need medical attention quickly. It’s times like these when you may need to visit an Urgent Care center.
What is an Urgent Care Center?
Emergency Care or Urgent Care?
During an intense situation when adrenaline is pumping and every second counts, it can be difficult to judge whether a person needs urgent or emergency care. You’ll first need to determine if the individual requires Emergency or Urgent Care.
A situation requiring Emergency Care is generally considered one in which the individual’s condition may be life-threatening. Urgent Care classifies as conditions which do require prompt care, but which are not life-threatening.
Emergency Care facilities will be equipped for major injuries or traumas. Urgent Care facilities are designed to diagnose and treat minor injuries or illnesses.
What does an Emergency Care Center Treat?
Some examples of Emergency Care situations are:
- Heart attack
- Heavy bleeding
- Gunshot or knife wounds
- Head, neck, or back injuries
- Convulsions or seizures
- Compound fractures
- Moderate to Severe Burns
While this is not a comprehensive list, the patient’s life may be at risk in all of these situations. All of these situations require immediate treatment.
What does an Urgent Care Center Treat?
Some examples of Urgent Care situations are:
- Sprains and strains
- Severe sore throat or cough
- Urinary tract infections
- Minor cuts or bleeding which require stitches
- Skin rashes
- Eye redness or irritation
- Vomiting or diarrhea
- Minor broken bones or fractures
There are many other situations which can classify as requiring Urgent Care. While prompt and effective, urgent care is not a substitute for emergency care. It is a convenient and quick healthcare option when primary care physicians are closed, and the patient’s condition is not life-threatening.
Differences Between Emergency and Urgent Care Facilities
Aside from the types of issues treated at Emergency and Urgent Care facilities, there are a few other differences between the two.
An Emergency Clinic will prioritize the incoming patients by the severity of the conditions. A person who has just been in a serious car accident and is suffering is internal bleeding will be prioritized over a person who has sprained an ankle. An Urgent Care facility operates on a first come, first serve basis.
Another big difference between Emergency and Urgent care is the cost. An Emergency Care center will be far more expensive than an Urgent Care facility since it costs much more for a hospital to maintain a 24-hour rotating staff. Urgent Care facilities will have extended hours beyond the average primary care center, and may be open on holidays, but are not open 24 hours a day.
Emergency Care should be reserved for true crisis situations, when a person may become permanently injured or their life is at risk. If your situation may be considered as a routine ailment and can wait, then you should visit an Urgent Care facility.
If you are unsure of whether your situation classifies as Emergency or Urgent, you can still visit an Emergency Care facility. All Emergency Care facilities will consider incoming patients on a case-by-case basis, and direct you to the appropriate care facility.
The Florida Medical Clinic Urgent Care Facility
The Florida Medical Clinic Adult and Pediatric Urgent Care Clinic is open 7 days a week to serve your family’s non-life threatening illnesses and injuries. Since we know that illness don’t wait for the business week, we’re even open on holidays!
While not required, we appreciate that you bring a list of medications the patient takes, as well as any over-the-counter medications or vitamins. We’ll also need to have a list of known allergies, and any previous surgeries or procedures. The more information our doctors have, the better we can build a treatment plan.
We are a full service clinic, and we provide after-hours medical care for life’s unexpected events. Our clinic is staffed by board-certified Florida Medical Clinic physicians to ensure that you receive the highest quality healthcare during your unplanned situation.