Taking Your Child To Urgent Care

It is a simple fact of life that sometimes, kids and adults alike will get hurt during their everyday lives, and sometimes, people fall ill. In some cases, a victim has to be taken to a convenient care clinic or a 24 hour walk in clinic, and for more serious or even life-threatening problems, the emergency room or emergency care at a hybrid clinic is urgently needed to save a life. Many clinics can also take care of those who are under 18 years old, and childrens urgent care centers can be found across the United States, along with pediatric care. Childrens urgent care can take care of many of the same problems that may present in an adult patient such as bad rashes or the flu, but childrens urgent care may also handle problems that are more common to kids, such as ear infections. How can a parent find childrens urgent care today when their child falls ill? And when is it time for emergency care? Or can a clinic provide both?

Emergency Care

It is important to note that urgent care and emergency care are in fact distinct, but some clinics are being designed to handle not one, but both types. Emergency care is most commonly needed for life-threatening health issues, and this often calls for a visit to either a hospital’s ER (emergency room) or a hybrid clinic. Major trauma such as broken arms or legs, head wounds, or bullet or stab wounds definitely call for a visit to an emergency care facility, and while urgent care centers are effective for other maladies, they are not equipped to deal with a stabbing victim, for example. Serious chest pain or difficulty breathing also call for a visit to emergency care, as these conditions may soon threaten a life. The doctors and physicians at an emergency care site will have the training, medicine, and equipment needed to get a patient’s life out of danger and help them recover. But it should be noted that for an emergency-only facility like a hopsital’s ER, discretion should be exercised. Often, patients at the ER could in fact have their health issues treated at an urgent care facility instead, and the reverse is rarely true. Only about 3% of urgent care patients are referred to an emergency room; most often, patients know what sort of care they need.

Urgent Care for Kids and Adults

If emergency care deals with life-threatening issues, then what does urgent care cover? Most other health issues, in fact. Urgent care clinics today, such as childrens urgent care, are independent facilities or part of a small network, and they are often stand-alone buildings or can be found in a shopping center. These facilities may sometimes be open 24 hours a day and seven days a week, and even those that are not can still have wide hours of operation for patients to visit them. These facilities are staffed with nurse practitioners and physicians, who will have the training and medical equipment to deal with a wide range of ailments among their patients.

Some urgent care centers are in fact hybrid clinics that can also admit patients with life-threatening problems, and some clinics are adopting this flexible model. Someone who is looking for care, however, should double-check that a nearby clinic indeed covers the type of care that they need. An online search can help, such as “emergency clinic near me Dallas TX” or “childrens urgent care Los Angeles CA” to find a nearby location and its address and hours of operation. These clinics, if running smoothly, can see about three patients per hour, and patients can expect a wait time around 15 minutes.

The common cold and flu can be addressed at a clinic, for example, when the patient gets medicine for symptom relief, and many clinics can help with allergies or food poisoning as well. Four out of five of health clinics can take care of bone fractures, and many can help with ankle or wrist sprains, which are fairly common. Upper respiratory issues can be dealt with at a clinic, and these clinics can also treat cuts with stitches and bandages, or apply lotions and ointments for bad rashes and other skin issues.

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