If you live in the United States, it is more likely than not that there is an urgent care center near you. Staffed by local doctors, these urgent care centers can be found all throughout the country. As a matter of fact, there are now very nearly 8,000 of them – at least, according to data that was gathered back in the year of 2016. In the years that have transpired since, these numbers have only grown. And with up to 20,000 doctors (or more) working at these walk in clinic locations, getting proper medical care and urgent care treatment has become more possible than ever before.
After all, urgent care locations tend to be able to provide very nearly the amount of treatment that any local hospital would. For one thing, only around 3% of all patients first seen at any given medical clinic would need to be transported to a hospital. This just goes to show that the average medical walk in clinic is more capable of handling various complex cases than it is often given credit for. But what, exactly, can your nearest urgent care center treat? While the answer might vary slightly from clinic to clinic, it is likely to maintain a wide array of conditions and injuries readily dealt with.
For one thing, urgent care clinics can deal with a wider range of injuries than you might think – at least at first. As a matter of fact, even fractures can be handled at up to 80% of all walk-in clinics, as these clinics will have the proper medical equipment to diagnose them as well as to treat them. For many of the people who go to the nearest urgent care center to treat a fracture, the benefits are great. After all, receiving fracture care in an urgent care setting is likely going to be much less costly than getting it at the local emergency room. It will also be less time consuming, as urgent care waiting periods tend to be much less lengthy than the wait times given for the average hospital ER.
Lesser injuries, such as ankle sprains, can also be treated. Ankle sprains in particular are common, as up to 25,000 of them will be sustained in a single day. Fortunately, they tend to be easy to treat, as the vast majority of them are caused by a forward roll of the joint. Therefore, the doctors who staff these walk in clinics will likely see a great many such cases over the course of their careers. And injuries, though commonly seen in urgent care centers, are not the only medical treatments given.
Various forms of testing are also able to be handled in your typical urgent care location. For instance, a DOT physical test can be important, as sometimes a DOT physical test will be required to obtain a job. The process of getting a DOT physical test is easy, and this DOT physical test can be obtained at just about any given medical walk in clinic. And in addition to the DOT physical test, there are many other kinds of medical tests that an urgent care facility will likely be able to give out. The DOT physical test is most certainly not the only one.
STD testing is also common, right alongside the DOT physical test. Knowing whether or not you have an STD is critical to your health, as this knowledge allows you to treat it accordingly. The same can be said for pregnancy testing, which will likely also be offered at the typical urgent care location. And all of these testing services certainly won’t be free, but they will cost significantly less than pursuing them at a different medical facility, such as in a hospital. And when such testing is made so widely and broadly accessible, it helps to allow more people to get ahold of this pertinent medical information for their lives and their overall health.
At the end of the day, there are a great many reasons for urgent care clinics to exist and operate in our country and in communities.