While it’s always useful to have an emergency room phone number handy, for most common illnesses and injuries you no longer need to go to an emergency room. Walk in clinics and urgent care centers can handle all kinds of non-life-threatening illnesses and conditions like sports injuries, back pain, coughs, colds and flu, strep throat, dizziness, diabetes, heartburn and more. With qualified doctors, nurses and technicians on staff, urgent cares can fulfill almost all of your non-emergency medical needs, including X-rays, onsite diagnostics and dispensing.
Many walk in clinics also offer occupational health services, employee health care, and sports physicals for schools and professional athletes. In 2012, the commonest diagnosis at walk in urgent care clinics was upper respiratory condition. The most common procedure carried out was wound repair. So while you shouldn’t throw away the emergency room phone number, it may be a good idea to learn a little about urgent care near you, for any future medical problems or procedures.
Diabetes sufferers need constant medical help, treatment and monitoring. Diabetes affects the way your body uses blood sugar or glucose, which is the source of fuel or energy for the cells in your muscles and tissues, and also for your brain. People suffering from diabetes have too much glucose in their blood, which can lead to serious health problems. The causes for high blood sugar vary according to the type of diabetes.
Chronic diabetes is classified as type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes. Treatments for diabetes are aimed at balancing the body’s blood sugar. Diet, exercise and therapy are used along with monitoring the blood sugar levels and insulin injections to bring these to a normal level.
Sports injuries are good examples of the kind of medical problem that you can take to the walk in clinic rather than calling the emergency room phone number. Sports injuries fall into three categories: trauma such as fractures, sprains and muscle pulls, and stressed and inflamed muscles from overuse.
Sprains are some of the commonest types of injuries and an estimated 25,000 Americans suffer ankle sprains every day. Most ankle sprains, around 80% of them result from inversion, or inward rolling, of the ankle.
Sprains can be treated with hot or cold compresses before being taken to a doctor. Many sports injuries can be prevented or minimized, especially for children, by following proper warm-up procedures and using correct equipment and clothing. All athletes should be aware of the importance of remaining fully hydrated.
Occupational medicine is concerned with workplace safety and health. It also helps employers ensure that they are in compliance with federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulations.
Urgent care centers are growing in popularity and according to the Urgent Care Association of America, they receive around 3 million patient visits each week. Given the wide range of services they offer, their increasing popularity is not surprising. The number of physicians practicing Urgent Care Medicine today is around 20,000. The large majority of urgent care centers, or 85% of them, are open seven days a week, and most have extended hours. With an urgent care center located near you, you will probably not be needing the emergency room number again in a hurry.