Should You Choose an Urgent Care or the ER?

Friday, March 4, 2022
 
 

When you’re faced by one of life’s emergencies – a sudden illness, a sports injury or another health-related issue - it’s important to understand your options.

Whether the emergency is experienced by an adult or a child, the questions are the same. Is it severe enough to warrant a visit to the emergency room? Or would you or your child be better served by a trip to an urgent care facility? Should you wait for a regular appointment with your primary care doctor or your child’s pediatrician?

Far too often, patients chose to visit an emergency room when an urgent care option might be better suited for their needs. This can put a strain on valuable healthcare resources, and bring about unnecessary costs that are passed on to the patient.

Here’s a list of some common medical emergencies, and the most appropriate care options for both adults and children:

ADULTS

Your Doctor

- Check-ups and physicals

- Common illnesses that don’t require immediate treatment

- Flu shots and other vaccines

- Preventive care and health screenings

- Routine tests

- Medication refills

- All services offered by Urgent Care


Urgent Care

- Cold or flu

- Sore throat

- Upper respiratory, eye or skin infection

- Urinary tract infection (UTI)

- Cut requiring stitches

- Ear aches

- Minor burns

- Sprains or strains

- Nausea, vomiting or diarrhea

- Allergic reaction

- Animal or insect bites

- Minor sports injury

- Suspected broken bone that hasn’t shifted out of place


Emergency Room

- Chest pain

- Signs of a stroke including numbness, affected speech or weakness of limbs

- Uncontrolled bleeding

- Coughing or vomiting blood

- Sudden loss of consciousness

- Severe abdominal pain

- Shortness of breath

- Severe burns

- Poisoning or overdose

- Head or eye injury

- Difficulty speaking

- Broken bone that has shifted out of place

- Rape victims


PEDIATRICS

Your Pediatrician

- Check-ups and physicals

- Common illnesses that don’t require immediate treatment

- Flu shots and other vaccines

- Preventive care and health screenings

- Routine tests

- Medication refills

- Specialist referrals

- Your child’s regular ongoing medical issues

- Children under 2 years of age

- High fever (call your pediatrician)

- Persistent vomiting (call your pediatrician)

- All services offered by Urgent Care


Urgent Care

- Congestion

- Sore throat

- Bladder infection

- Cut requiring stitches

- Ear aches and headaches

- Minor burns

- Dehydration

- Poor feeding

- Skin rash

- Stiff neck

- Vomiting or diarrhea

- Minor sports injury


Emergency Room

- Severe asthma or allergic reaction

- Traumatic injury

- Turning pale or blue

- Severe burns or laceration

- Severe abdominal pain

- Sudden loss of consciousness

- Shortness of breath

- Lethargic or hard to wake

- Poisoning or overdose

- Head or eye injury

- Broken bone that has shifted out of place

- Children under 2 years of age


Watson Clinic’s immediate care facilities – Urgent Care Main, Urgent Care South and XpressCare Highlands – are open seven days a week, and offer expert treatments for minor illnesses and injuries for patient ages 2 and up without the need for an appointment.

Appointments with your Watson Clinic Internal Medicine or Family Medicine physician can be scheduled by calling 863-680-7190.
 

To schedule an appointment with Watson Clinic’s Pediatrics department at any one of four convenient locations, call 863-607-3346 (Highlands), 863-680-7337 (North Pediatrics), 813-710-2300 (Plant City) or 863-647-8012 (South).

 
 
3/4/2022

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