When you are dealing with an immediate but not life-threatening medical need, like a sprain or earache, you can go to your local urgent care center. You do not need an appointment like you do with your regular physician. If you have never been to an urgent care center, however, you might not know what to expect.
Here are a few tips to have a more successful urgent care visit.
Determine If an Urgent Care Center Can Actually Help You
Although urgent care centers can treat a wide range of health issues, they are not equipped to handle life-threatening ones. If you are dealing with a fairly minor issue, such as a cut, animal bite, fever, or urinary tract infection, you should head down to your local urgent care center. On the other hand, if you are dealing with chest pain or breathing problems, you should go to the ER.
Do not Forget Your Insurance Card
Before you leave to go to the urgent care center, grab your insurance card. The staff will use the information to submit a claim. However, even with insurance, understand that you will still likely have a copay at the time of your visit.
Bring Your Medical Records
At an urgent care center, you will not be seeing your regular physician. Therefore, they will not know anything about your medical history. That is why you should bring a list of your medical conditions, current medications, and allergies.
Bring a Family Member or Friend
When you are dealing with an immediate medical need, it is easy to feel stressed and overwhelmed. Bringing a close family member or friend can help ease your nerves and make the visit more tolerable. He or she can provide encouraging words as you wait to see a doctor.
When you see a doctor at an urgent care center, do not be afraid to ask questions. For instance, you may want to know what could have caused your ailment or when you should expect to recover. The doctor you see should be more than willing to address your concerns. If you have additional questions after your visit, do not hesitate to call the clinic.
If you follow these helpful tips, you should have a successful trip to the urgent care center. Do not forget to call your primary physician afterward to inform him or her about your visit to urgent care.