The difference between emergency room (ER) visits and urgent care may be small but they are vital. So, let’s take a moment to know when you should opt for urgent care and ER during injury or sickness.
Urgent care vs. ER visit
You can always opt for urgent care like LitonMD that’s available 24/7 virtually for less serious conditions. LitonMD’s urgent care is available to deliver care outside of your regular clinical hours. Urgent care deals with routine medical care that involves diagnosis, treatment, and prescribing of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved medications. This type of care deals with all minor conditions such as headaches, fever, cold, injuries, sprains, etc. However, it does not include advanced medical facilities or operating rooms. You cannot rely on urgent care for severe signs or symptoms that requires surgery. While visiting an urgent care center, you will have access to IV therapy, basic lab tests such as blood tests and X-ray examination, vaccinations, and medication refills as well. Urgent care facilities provide 24-hour service but they do not provide rooms for hospitalizations and overnight stays.
Emergency rooms (ER)
You can rely on ER for major injuries and illnesses. Like urgent care centers, they are open 24/7. You will have access to operating rooms and advanced diagnostics such as MRI, ultrasounds, CAT scans, and radiology labs. They have highly experienced board-certified care providers in all medical specialties for delivering appropriate treatment. Furthermore, the ER is equipped with beds and rooms. So, patients can stay overnight as well.
In case your condition is not that severe, you can think about heading to an urgent care center before an ER.
Imagine you have to visit an ER to fix your broken leg. ER visits cost nearly $7,000+ to fix a broken leg. Hospitalization for a minimum of three days costs nearly $30,000. Although medical insurance may cover a certain portion of this cost, the out-of-pocket costs can put a dent in your budget. The policyholders may have to pay a minimum of $7,000 though it’s better than paying a $37,000 bill. Suppose you don’t have medical insurance, paying $37,000 could be very difficult for you.
In such cases, urgent care visits prove to be less expensive than ER visits. The urgent care visit cost, especially for LitonMD, is only 150 USD. The ER visit, unlike urgent care, costs 750 USD. Furthermore, LitonMD offers virtual care so you can save your time in long waits.
Usually, insurance co-pays for urgent care visits are lesser than ER visits. With LitonMD, you don’t have to face any insurance or co-pay hassles. You can get access to online doctors and receive prescription medications from the convenience of your home or workplace. All you have to pay is just 150 USD for LitonMD’s urgent care pay per visit.
We recommend you to listen to your body and trust your instinct. Figure out whether your condition is serious or not. Check if the symptom is persistent or improves over time. If it’s serious and requires immediate medical attention, don’t hesitate or delay. Just head to the nearest ER.
Serious symptoms that require ER visits include trouble in breathing, slurred speech, chest pain, serious burn, severe dehydration, severe vomiting, unconsciousness, and weakness on one side or both sides.
For lesser serious signs or symptoms like fever, mild asthma, headache, sprain, minor cuts, animal bites, joint pain, back pain, urinary tract infection, sore throat, and cold, you can always visit 24-hour urgent care.
You can go to an ER from urgent care as well. If you get treated via urgent care, then you don’t have to head to an ER and you can save money significantly.
If you are not sure about the seriousness of your condition, call an urgent care platform like LitonMD and enquire whether they can treat your condition.