Urgent care facilities are popular due to their convenient after-hours medical care and their ability to quickly treat common ailments and minor injuries. Recent studies support this. During 2016, 27% of patients in America replied that within the previous two years, they had sought care at an urgent care clinic. Also in 2016, the Urgent Care Association of America’s Benchmarking Report revealed that in the previous year, upper respiratory infections, sinusitis, coughs, pharyngitis, and bronchitis were among the most frequently treated ailments at urgent care clinics. In addition, 92% of these clinics also consistently offered waiting periods of 30 minutes or less.

A current study found that even though a trip to the ER is warranted in some instances, between 44% and 65% of all Emergency Room (ER) visits could have been managed by an urgent care clinic. Becker’s Hospital Review reported that just 3% of individuals coming to an urgent care facility had to be re-routed to an ER. Over 70% of visits to an ER that involved individuals with consumer-sponsored healthcare coverage are for conditions that either could have been prevented or were not critical.

Emergency room vs. urgent care: How do you choose?

Thanks to immediate care facilities, you don’t have to. Here’s what you need to know about them.

1. They’re Ground-Breaking.
This is a revolutionary healthcare model, in which an urgent care clinic and an ER are brought together in one convenient hybrid location. As Centura Health explains, immediate care centers are prepared to quickly and accurately assess your condition and provide you with the highest quality of treatment.

2. They’re Cost-Effective.
You’re charged only for the degree of care that you required, whether it’s for a common cold or a life-threatening health crisis. 
For that reason, this model is more cost-effective. Full Spectrum ER and Urgent Care also comments that because of their capability to treat and bill for urgent care and ER care separately, the fees are generally significantly lower than the pricing for comparable health issues treated at a hospital’s ER.

3. They’re Beneficial to Communities.
Centura Health believes that by offering exercise and fitness classes, health screenings, and other events to educate the community, health care providers can help to promote healthy lifestyle choices and stress the need for preventative health care.

If you find yourself in need of medical attention, where to seek care is one less decision to worry about. An immediate care center can put you at ease with one-stop comprehensive medical services