When given the choice, many parents would choose to take their children to urgent care instead of an emergency room. This is due to the fact that it is cheaper, quicker, and less of a hassle overall. However, as a parent, you may be a little nervous about what it is going to be like at urgent care. You know your child is not in a life-threatening situation, but what will the process of the visit be like? In order for you to be in control of the situation and help your child through, it is a good thing to be prepared emotionally. Here is what you can expect from the average urgent care clinic.
Since most people do not go to urgent care clinics frequently, it is unlikely that they will have your insurance information. When you sign in to an urgent care clinic they will ask for your insurance cards or the numbers on it in order to make sure that you are covered. This is done so that they can get paid for whatever services they render to you. If your insurance is not covered by the clinic, they may ask you to pay a base fee of $50-$100.
Wait Your Turn
Urgent care clinics can sometimes have a long wait time. This is especially true during cold and flu season. If you live in an area where there are multiple urgent care clinics, you may want to ask what their wait time is before you drive all the way there.
See the Doctor
Doctors often rotate through shifts at urgent care clinics. Some work there exclusively while others just take turns. No matter who they are, you can be sure they will be professional and assess the situation.
Procedures If Necessary
Many urgent care clinics have x-ray and ultrasound machines to help in times of emergency. This is helpful since they are often needed in emergency situations and not all doctors have access to them.
If needed, patients who are in extreme distress will be transferred via ambulance to the emergency room.
In conclusion, urgent care is nothing to be afraid of. Some offices can be very similar to a normal doctor's visit, while others have more emergency protocols. You may want to call your insurance ahead of time to make sure that whatever clinic you go to is considered in-network. This will help to reduce the cost of your visit.