The Doctor Is In: When Should I Use The ER, PCP, Retail Clinic Or Urgent Care?
It is inevitable that we will need to seek medical care for ourselves or our loved ones at some point in our lives. There are so many options these days to decide from exactly where you should you go. Everyone is familiar with the Emergency Room and your Primary Care Physician. There are many people that are still not utilizing Urgent Care Clinic’s but they are open later hours than your PCP but cheaper than going to the Emergency Room. New on the market are the Retail Clinic’s, these clinics are found in grocery stores, drugstores, etc.
1. When Should You Go To The ER?
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The emergency room is for EMERGENCIES!
If you have a serious injury, severe chest pain, temperature over 103F.
If your child experiences any of the following symptoms go to the emergency room:
A fever of 104F or higher for >48 hours, accompanied with other symptoms ie. child is lethargic, not eating or drinking.
A headache with neurological symptoms (such as confusion, blurred vision, or trouble walking) should be evaluated by an emergency room doctor.
A non-blanching rash (small red or purple spots on the skin that don't change color when you press on them) can indicate a medical emergency such as meningitis or sepsis, particularly when accompanied by a fever.
A combination of vomiting with diarrhea can quickly lead to dehydration. Dehydration needs to be closely monitored and sometimes needs emergency treatment.