Urgent Care FAQ
What is urgent care and how does it work?
Urgent care centers are designed to treat those who need attention quickly but donʼt require an emergency room visit. Urgent cares do not require appointments and are generally open longer hours than a primary care physicianʼs ofﬁce. For instance, all Hometown Urgent Care’s are open 7 days a week.
What can urgent care centers treat?
Generally, they can treat everyday injuries and illnesses. Hometown can treat everything from colds, flu and cuts to fractures, sprains and other minor injuries. We provide immunizations, sports physicals, EKGs and x-rays. We perform minor surgical procedures, such as stitches. We also have on-site labs and dispense common medications.
Who does Hometown Urgent Care treat?
Anyone. Urgent care is a solution for individuals of all ages. Kids with a cough. Teenagers needing sports physicals, adults with a minor injury. Some have lived in town for years but can’t get in to see their primary care physician; some have just moved to town and have yet to establish a primary care physician; some are visiting from out of town; all are looking for high quality, compassionate care from someone they can trust.
What about insurance?
Most insurance is accepted, but it is not required. We also accept Medicare, Medicaid and offer low cost self-pay solutions.
What about follow-up care?
Hometown follows up with every patient within three days of his/her visit. At your request, we’re happy to follow up with your primary care physician to ensure that you get the care you need on an ongoing basis.
What is the role of urgent care in today’s healthcare system?
Urgent care fills a gap in the health care system created by two fundamental issues: increasing wait times to see primary care physicians and the cost and wait times for emergency room visits. According to the 2006 National Hospital Ambulatory Careʼs Emergency Department survey, more than 85 million ER visits (or 71%) were unnecessary. The patient required “urgent care” but not “emergency care” and could have been treated at an urgent care center. Urgent careʼs impact is showing up in three critical areas: time, cost and quality.
How does urgent care compare with ERs and primary care physicians on wait times?
According to the 2009 Merritt Hawkins study, the average wait time to make an appointment with a primary care physician is more than 20 days. Patients with everyday medical issues are faced with two options: wait for that appointment, or make an unnecessary, costly visit to the ER. But the latter choice is not necessarily fast. The average Emergency Room visit lasts approximately 212 minutes. The average visit lasts less than one hour, and is a fraction of the cost of the ER.
How does urgent care compare with ERs on cost?
Generally, Hometown is 88% less than the average ER visit. Had those 85 million patients who made unnecessary ER visits opted to visit urgent care clinics, the patients, insurers and system could have saved more than $30-$40 billion.
But what about quality of care?
Hometown offers a highly trained medical team. In addition, we ensure all providers are current and up to date with any special credentialing or training requirements. State of the art equipment and facilities are routinely commended for cleanliness and functionality, all of which contribute to a high-quality health care experience.
What will you find at a typical center?
Hometown prides itself on providing care in a warm, friendly environment. Our centers offer multiple, private treatment rooms and a comforting aesthetic helps you start feeling better immediately. Each center offers full-service capabilities including state of the art equipment and on-site X-Rays, Lab, EKG and on-site prescriptions.