How to Know if You Should Go to the ER

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Over the course of your life, you’ll probably ask yourself lots of questions about your health: is this just a cold or something more serious? How much does STD testing cost? Should I see my doctor or go to the emergency room?

All of these questions can be answered in one place: urgent care facilities. In the U.S. alone, there are 6,800 of these neighborhood health clinics. Most are located in freestanding buildings and offer a variety of services, from confidential STD testing (making them the best place to find out the answer to “how much does STD testing cost?”) to treating sprains.

Urgent care centers are designed to provide medical service for conditions that are not serious enough for a visit to the emergency room, and yet still require urgent attention, such as a broken arm or leg. Because of the necessity of the services they provide, many of these clinics now offer 24 hr urgent care. Additionally, many community health clinics are now expanding to concentrate on providing lab services, x-rays, and routine physicals, along with their traditional evaluation and treatment of acute conditions.

Urgent care centers represent one of the fastest-growing areas in the American healthcare system, employing approximately 129,043 people around the country. This increase in popularity now makes it easier than ever to access basic healthcare, whether you need to treat an acute injury or even have lab work done, such as anonymous STD testing. Next time you have a non-critical medical situation that still required medical attention, don’t waste your time waiting in an emergency room, and don’t hold off treatment until you can see your doctor: find an urgent care center near you.
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