Urgent Care vs. Emergency Room? How to Know Where to Go.
Comparing Cost, Time And Quality Of Immediate Medical Care
While urgent care clinics and emergency rooms provide a number of the same services, there are substantial differences that can greatly impact uninformed consumers. Making the wrong choice when illness or injury strikes can cost thousands of dollars and hours of time—without the benefit of a better quality of care.
“Statistically, between 13 and 27 percent of emergency room patients could have been effectively treated in an urgent care setting—which could have saved those patients, on average, about $2,090 and more than three hours of their time—all without sacrificing quality of care,” says Stacey R. Gouzenne, MD, FACEP, national chief medical officer for FastMed Urgent Care (@FastMedClinics) and Fellow of the American College of Emergency Physicians. “In fact, patient research shows that treatment for common illnesses is equal or better at urgent care clinics [when compared to ERs].”
In recognition of May being National Urgent Care Awareness Month, FastMed Urgent Care created a new infographic, “Urgent Care vs. the ER: What You Need to Know” to help patients determine where to go the next time immediate medical treatment is needed.
The infographic visually explains:
- Differences between urgent care clinics vs. ERs
- Cost, time and quality considerations
- Conditions best suited for urgent care vs. the ER
Annually, patients spend $4.4 billion on unnecessary ER visits when treatment could have been provided at an urgent care clinic. Even for insured patients, the average co-pay for an ER visit can be as much as four times more expensive than an urgent care co-pay.
By having information tools on hand like the “Urgent Care vs. the ER: What You Need to Know” infographic, you’ll be ready to make the best decision for your immediate medical treatment needs.
FastMed Urgent Care owns and operates more than 100 locations across Arizona, North Carolina and Texas, providing a broad range of acute/episodic and preventive healthcare services 365 days per year. FastMed also provides workers’ compensation services at all of its clinics, and family and sports medicine services at select locations. FastMed has successfully treated more than 5.3 million patients since the opening of its first clinic in 2005, and is the largest urgent care operator to be awarded the Joint Commission Gold Seal of Approval® for accreditation in healthcare quality and safety in ambulatory healthcare.