We often get sick or injured when it is the least convenient, particularly during hours when our family doctor or general care practitioner is off the clock. Unfortunately, this means that many of us take our relatively minor medical issues to be seen at our local emergency room, where service is offered to those in need of it around the clock. But there are a number of reasons why is this is the less than ideal option when it comes to getting medical care.
For one thing, wait times at the average emergency room are quite long indeed, something that is certainly not helped by the fact that such places all too often become clogged with non-emergent cases. If you go to an emergency room, particularly an understaffed one, you’ll likely wait an hour – or more – before you are able to get any kind of medical attention. Only if you have a truly life threatening emergency will you be seen in a prompt and urgent manner.
And it’s not just the wait times associated with your average emergency room that should deter you from going to one. In addition to waiting a good deal of time, you will also have to pay a good deal of money. Emergency room visits do not come cheap even to those who have decent health insurance. It’s commonplace for an ER visit to cost someone up to $1,000 for just one single trip, even for being seen for a relatively minor medical concern. For this reason and others, many people will avoid the ER and simply go without the medical care that they might be very much in need of.
Fortunately, however, more and more alternatives for on-demand care are popping up. For one thing, the average doctor’s office might simply just stay open later. The data even supports this proposition, showing that as many as 40% of general practitioners will be open for at least some evening and weekend hours. Because of this, more and more people are able to receive care from their own doctor when they need it the most.
But when the doctor isn’t personally available, an online doctor might be. More and more practices are offering online services when their actual doors are closed, providing on-demand care that more and more people are becoming comfortable with. After all, more than half of all survey participants even stated that, so long as their own doctor (or a doctor that they were familiar with, perhaps another doctor in the practice) was able to assist them, they would be more than willing to take advantage of this form of convenient medical care. In addition to this, more than 60% of all people said that as long as the telemedicine provider has their records, they feel comfortable utilizing their services. And this is very easy indeed for their own practice to accomplish, of course.
When it comes to getting on-demand care, there are even more options available. The 24 hour urgent care clinic is another example of a place to seek medical attention when one’s typical doctor’s office is closed for the evening, for the weekend, or for the holiday, even. If you’re not comfortable with seeing a virtual doctor for your on-demand care, seeing a doctor at any urgent care location is likely to be your best bet for medical treatment. After all, there are now more than 7,000 urgent care locations open throughout the country, employing more than 20,000 doctors and even more other such medical professionals.
Urgent care centers provide a great deal of valid medical care. In fact, more than three million people even visit them on a weekly basis. In addition to this, only around 3% of their cases will ever even need to be transferred to the nearest emergency room. In up to 80% of all urgent care clinics, on-demand care for more serious cases, such as fractures, can also be given. When you’re looking for regular on-demand care as needed, the urgent care center can provide a great venue for exactly this. At the end of the day, on-demand care is easier to get when there are urgent cares.