There are many statistics about urgent centers that are worth noting at the start of this article. They involve the number of physicians who practice Urgent Care Medicine today, the number of urgent care centers that are open seven days a week, the most common diagnosis in an urgent care center, and the different illnesses and ailments they treat.
- There are currently 20,000 physicians who practice Urgent Care Medicine today.
- Eighty-five percent of urgent care centers are open seven days a week.
- The most common diagnosis in an urgent care center was upper respiratory condition, and the most common procedure was wound repair in 2012.
- Four out of five urgent care centers provide fracture care.
There are many ailments that afflict those who seek treatment at an urgent care center. They can range from dizziness to broken bones to ankle sprains to influenza to bronchitis to lacerations to diabetes and sexually transmitted diseases to other illnesses and ailments as well. There are many conditions that are treated in urgent care centers.
Some of these conditions are serious and not life threatening. Some of these conditions are mild and have little do with the urgent care center needs. Some are serious and require immediate medical attention. Urgent care centers treat conditions that span the spectrum in terms of needed and immediate medical assistance. Some of them include the following.
- Dizziness is the second most common complaint heard in doctor’s offices, and will occur in 70% of the nation’s population at sometime in their lives.
- It has been estimated that 65% of individuals older than 60 years of age experience dizziness or loss of balance, often on a daily basis.
- Reports estimate that 25,000 Americans suffer from an ankle sprain each day.
- More than 80% of ankle sprains are a result of inversion, or inward rolling, of the ankle.
- By 2030, six out of 10 Baby Boomers will be managing a chronic condition.
- One out of 10 Baby Boomers report that their physical activity is limited to a few days a month.
- Up to 69% of Americans say that low back pain affects their day-to-day lives.
- Four in 10 people try to exercise to relieve lower back pain.
- At least 40% of people suffering from long-term low back pain do not see a doctor or physical therapist.
And here is the amount of people that go to urgent care centers per week, according to one statistic: An estimated 3 million patients visit them each week, according to the Urgent Care Association of America. That’s three million people who are not visiting the primary care physician or the hospital, unless a patient is seeing both or all three.
Urgent care centers have many terms associated with them. They include list of doctors, local doctors, medical clinic, medical help, medical walk in clinic, nearest urgent care clinic, occupational health, occupational health hazards, occupational health services, physical therapy, and more.
An urgent care clinic sees people on a walk in basis according to need. Patients are seen according to the rules of that urgent care clinic. According to other statistics in previous articles, urgent care centers usually have at least one physician on site, with some having a mid level provider.
An urgent care clinic also has numerous examination rooms, usually sees people in less than 15 minutes, and has x-ray and other equipment available to help the doctors ascertain what the problem with the patient signifies and to make a firm diagnosis of the situation. The most common procedure in an urgent care clinic is to treat lacerations.
An urgent care clinic has many benefits over other forms of service. They see people on a walk in basis, without an appointment needed to be made, at a lower cost than emergency rooms (and with a shorter wait time), have mid level and regular level physicians who treat illnesses, and have doctors trained in urgent care medicine.
Urgent care centers have the ability to treat numerous people at once, have a doctor diagnose and treat people quickly (possibly) and generally do so at a fraction of the cost that other immediate clinics (such as emergency rooms) would. They have sophisticated equipment enough to handle most issues.
And they can refer someone to the emergency room if need be.
They are designed to help those with immediate issues who need help.
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