Injuries and illnesses may occur to anyone, regardless of where they are and what they do. Fortunately, urgent care professionals can diagnose and treat colds, coughs, minor burns and wounds, rashes, and other non-life-threatening conditions. Think of urgent care as a bridge between your regular care physician and the emergency room.
A lot of people prefer an urgent care because of its fast and reliable solutions to most of their medical needs. There are over 5,360 urgent care centers all over the United States, showing an increase of 6.6% since 2020. In fact, urgent care is quickly becoming the chosen healthcare provider for a rising part of the population in the United States.
But why is there a demand for urgent care during the pandemic? Why do a lot of people prefer the services offered by urgent care clinics? What is the future of urgent care given the current situation?
In this article, we will discuss the importance of an urgent care near you, especially during the pandemic.
High demand for COVID testing and COVID vaccine near me
According to research that surveyed half of U.S. clinics, urgent care clinics saw a 58% increase in visitation volumes in 2020. Most are due to the demand for COVID-19-related symptomatic care. Urgent care COVID testing (RT-PCR and rapid COVID testing near me) and vaccinations account for more than 60% of total visits.
COVID-19 tests are available in pharmacies, community clinics, and primary care providers. But more and more people prefer getting tested at an urgent care facility. Why? It is one of the few places where they can walk in without an appointment.
Aside from COVID-19 cases, urgent care clinics are also witnessing an increase in the number of patients during the cold and flu season. One major reason is that they both have symptoms that are similar to COVID-19. Many folks are also getting tested in urgent care clinics before visiting relatives during the holidays.
According to physician and urgent care expert Dr. David Stern, an industry-specific system can help improve urgent care operations. Personalized technology helps drive operational efficiency and improve the overall patient experience.
Why do more people prefer urgent care centers?
The unique role that urgent care facilities play in the American healthcare system is one of the main reasons for this growth. Urgent care facilities are stand-alone medical clinics where people can walk in for medical attention. Their hours are longer than that of primary care physicians — some operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Here are more reasons why most patients prefer urgent care:
- Minimal waiting time
- Transparency in pricing
- Accessible locations
- Check-in online for teleconsultation or telemedicine
- Available patient reviews online
- Digital patient portals
- Downloadable mobile app for medical care and support
The future of urgent care
The millennial generation is the largest in the United States. This generation has been reshaping industry conventions based on efficiency, accessibility, and transparency. Healthcare is no exception.
The surge of patients is one of the most interesting developments in every urgent care and walk-in clinic near me. More than ever, people are turning to urgent care clinics rather than going to primary care doctors or emergency rooms. The demand is high indeed and it seems like it will remain that way for many years to come.