Once considered laughable, so-called “doc-in-a-box” clinics, urgent care clinics have revolutionized the healthcare industry, and continue to bridge the gap between overburdened hospital emergency departments and primary care physicians. As the public demand for quality, cost-effective, and convenient healthcare continues to increase, so has the amount of urgent care clinics.
Urgent care in the United States is design to evaluate and treat medical conditions and illnesses that are not severe enough to require treatment at a hospital emergency room, yet still require some form of immediate medical condition. Though common ailments treated at urgent care facilities include sprains, stomach illnesses such as bugs, and respiratory infections, some have gone beyond these and are equipped with onsite x ray capability, lab services, and in-house prescription dispensaries. Typically, patients are seen and treated within an hour of their arrival.
As the outbreak of the enterovirus ED-V68 continues to spread in the Midwestern region of the United States, several metropolitan hospitals have not only experienced an influx of patients who possibly have the virus, but a number of hospitals have begun restricting visitation in an effort to contain the highly contagious virus. Urgent care in these areas are an excellent alternative to receive treatment for those we are experiencing the cold and flu-like symptoms of this condition.
Urgent care in general is designed to treat acutely occurring medical conditions, however, several mental health urgent care centers have also begun to sprout in metropolitan areas. These state=of-the-art clinics focus on treating those who are suffering from mental health conditions, and may pose a threat to themselves and others.
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