Facts you should know about urgent care centers. (1)

Urgent care is a dedicated medical center, mostly located outside the emergency. Health conditions that are not life-threatening are treated in such centers.

People usually don’t want to make an appointment for their non-threatening conditions as they had to wait too much in the queue or they just want immediate treatment, they rush to the emergency room and now urgent care centers had taken the burden of emergency departments. Emergency rooms are now dedicated to life-threatening or serious conditions. Here are some facts about urgent care centers:

  1. Urgent care centers are not the same as retail clinics.

Walk-in clinics are usually called retail clinics as they are mostly located at pharmacies, supermarkets, and stores. Clinicians at retail clinics look after minor illnesses and uncomplicated diseases, while urgent care centers give treatment for other issues. Urgent care centers are similar to walk-in clinics but they treat conditions and injuries that are uncomplicated but need immediate care but the visit of such patients should be avoided in emergency rooms. Retail clinics are not open 24 hours of the day but urgent care centers are at work 24 hours a week. Since 1970, urgent care centers are working in the United States.

  1. Urgent care centers reduce unnecessary visits to emergency rooms (ER)

When patients are unable to schedule their appointment or when their physician is not available they rush to emergency rooms (ER). Urgent care centers are introduced so the patient should not make their visit to the emergency room just for an X-ray or treatment for mild cold. Insurers of urgent care centers are promoting the visit to urgent care clinics rather than the emergency room for uncomplicated diseases. Insurers like REGIONAL CIGNA and BLUE CROSS BLUE SHIELD are making broachers in which they have highlighted the conditions when people should visit emergency room and urgent care centers. They have also highlighted the nearest urgent care centers and emergency departments.

  1. Urgent care centers physicians can prescribe most of the medications, but not all

Urgent care centers have pharmacies outside or inside the clinic. Healthcare providers working there can prescribe medications like antibiotics, allergy and asthma medication, short-term pain medicine, antiviral medications, one-time maintenance dose, and medicines for several stomach conditions. Many medications required continuous monitoring and follow-up, so doctors of urgent care centers can’t prescribe them. Drugs that they can’t prescribe include narcotics, medicines for anti-anxiety, and medications for long-term pain.

  1. Millennials prefer urgent care centers over primary care

Surveys conducted by FAIR HEALTH, reports that millennials were more dragged to urgent care centers due to their convenience. The millennial age group from eighteen to thirty-four and a bit older from age group thirty-five to forty-four were more dependent on urgent care centers according to the study while seniors from age 45 or older were more likely to rely on primary care.

  1. Urgent care is not a replacement for primary care

Most Americans have their primary care physician, who utilizes urgent care more often. They see urgent care as a bridge between the doctor’s office and the emergency room. According to a recent survey, people usually visit urgent care centers when their primary doctor is not available, no appointments left or the office was closed.

What conditions are treated at urgent care centers?

Conditions that not life-threatening but should be treated within 24 hours should be treated at urgent care centers. Some of them are as follows:

  • Fever or flu
  • Accident and falls
  • Difficulty in breathing or mild to moderate attacks of asthma
  • Irritation or redness of an eye
  • Cut’s that don’t bleed much but stitches are important
  • Diagnostic services such as laboratory tests and X-rays.
  • Minor fractures in bones of fingers or toes.
  • Urinary tract infection
  • Moderate back pain
  • Skin rashes and infections
  • Vomiting, diarrhea, and dehydration
  • Severe sore throat or cough
  • Sprains and strains

What services urgent care provide?

Similar to walk-in clinics, urgent care centers deal with non-life-threatening conditions in a very fast, efficient, and affordable way. Services of urgent care centers are enhanced as compared to walk-in clinics. They provide care for minor cough, cold flu, or sore throat. Other advanced services that urgent care centers may provide are:

  • Lab tests
  • Laceration care
  • Pre-employment drug testing and screening
  • Orthopedic care
  • Vaccinations
  • Digital X-rays
  • On-site pharmacies
  • Physical exams.

Treatment for the common cold, flu, and cough

Urgent care centers address the symptoms of cold, cough, or flu. People with a compromised immune system or if they are living with a chronic disease, it can also be treated effectively and efficiently at urgent care centers.

Treatment for stomach-ache and ear infections

Ear infection should be treated as soon as possible so urgent care is the best option for people with an ear infection. Stomach aches can also be treated at urgent care centers.

Treatment for minor injuries:

List of minor injuries that can be treated at urgent care centers

  • Minor burns
  • Minor lacerations
  • Minor sprains
  • Small fractures

School and sports physicals

Children can get services of school and sports physicals at urgent care centers if they wish to join a sports team or before starting school to check for their good heath overall.

Staffing models of urgent care centers

There are three staffing models available for urgent care centers:

  1. Physician only

It is the most expensive model as it doesn’t require mid-level practitioners. It is the best option for new centers that are building their patient base cost-effectively.

  1. Mixed model

Centers with increased flow of patients have a great balance of trained physicians, assistant of physicians and nurses.

  1. Mid-level model

Centers that are staffed with mid-level staff are suitable for centers with low acuity cases, but these canters can’t handle the complex need of patients.

Top urgent care centers working online (2)

AFC Urgent care

  • People of all ages are accepted
  • Discount available
  • They have programs to help patients with no health insurance
  • Option available for online scheduling

Care spot MedPost

  • Call ahead option
  • Online scheduling
  • On-site X-rays and lab tests
  • Option available for a wait at home
  • Available from 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM



  1. https://www.ajmc.com/view/5-facts-about-urgent-care-clinics
  2. https://www.verywellhealth.com/best-urgent-care-5104972