When you’re not feeling your best, it’s important to be able to go to the right place for proper medical care. There are many different facilities that you can go to when it comes to your health. Here are the key differences between urgent care centers and walk-in clinics.
What Is Urgent Care?
When you have a life-threatening injury, it’s important to go to the emergency room. In most cases, this is the only place that can treat you when something like this happens. For many people though, they don’t need to go to an emergency room for whatever is happening to them. Whether it’s a cut that needs stitches or a dislocated shoulder, you may not need to go to an emergency room to have these fixed.
An urgent care center is a facility that has licensed professionals on staff along with a short wait time so you can get back to what you need to do. According to the Urgent Care Association’s 2017 Benchmarking Report Summary, 90% of urgent care centers were able to see a patient within 30 minutes of their initial arrival. Urgent cares also accept most insurances and can have someone out the door in a short amount of time. The only big difference is that most urgent cares don’t have the ability to perform complicated surgeries. This is why for something that’s life-threatening, a facility that has the ability to perform those types of surgeries is what’s best.
What Is a Walk in Clinic?
If Urgent care is a step down from the emergency room, a walk in clinic is another step down from urgent care. This doesn’t mean that walk in clinics are any less important. When you have a cold or a fever, a walk in clinic can be a great help. Originally, walk in clinics were created to accommodate people who didn’t have insurance. It was a way for people to be able to treat minor injuries without breaking the bank. For a walk in clinic though, it isn’t required that everyone on staff is a licensed doctor. Licensed nurses can work in walk-in clinics, and this still doesn’t change the fact that for certain people, this is exactly what they need to get back out the door.
What’s the Difference?
The big difference between these two types of facilities is what they can quickly treat. While both can treat some of the same things, one facility may have tools more readily available to handle the situation you’re in. When it comes to a walk in clinic, they can quickly address any sort of illness you get. If you have a cold or fever, they have medications that can help you get through the workday without having to call in sick. They also have the ability to do a quick check-up to analyze if there may be a more serious problem that you need to go to the hospital for.
On the other hand, urgent care centers can treat more devastating injuries on the spot. While anything life-threatening needs to be taken to an emergency room, there are many urgent care centers that have the ability to address a broken bone or a fracture. Thanks to the rise in urgent cares popularity, they have been able to equip their facilities with equipment that can help to fix more severe things. Although both of these facilities may seem similar, they can help you at different levels and going to the right place for the illness you have can result in a faster visit and a more precise diagnosis.
When looking at both facilities, they both serve key roles in their communities. No matter what type of injury or illness you have, both of these places can help to relieve your pain and get you back up and going. If you find that you’re in need of any health-related services and are located in the New Jersey area, don’t be afraid to reach out and give us a call! We’d be happy to help in any way we can and hope to address any issues you feel you may be having.