The topic of health care is always one that is likely to spark debate between politicians, between American people. For good reason, the general public are concerned with their health, with getting the help that they need when they need it. Some of the topics of concern that they discuss range from costly medical bills to insurance costs. From doctors and whether they can trust them or not, to the treatments that they recommend or call for. And from the wait time to actually get an appointment to the waiting done when they’re in the office, there’s quite a bit for
people to discuss.
Indeed, the medical field is not one that is without issues that people concern themselves with, both when they seek medical treatment and when they do not. The people are concerned with their health, point blank; that is to be expected.
Given all these concerns and then some, many Americans are forgoing the traditional route when it comes to seeking medical care. Rather than seeking out a hospital or making an appointment with a GP—if they can get one at all. It is estimated that around 1 million patients per week are unable to even get an appointment with a GP—many are seeking out urgent care clinics instead. It has been estimated by the Urgent Care Association of America that around 3 million patients visit urgent care centers per week.
An urgent care clinic is somewhere between a GP and an emergency room. They do not deal with life threatening circumstances where one should absolutely seek out an emergency room ASAP, but they do deal with everything from stitches to fractures, from nasty cases of the flu to poison ivy to urinary tract infections—things that very much so require urgent care.
In addition to providing care for a plethora of medical scenarios, most urgent care centers are walk ins, meaning patients do not have to call and schedule an appointment or wait a week or longer to be seen. And with around 85% of urgent care centers being open seven days a week, if a patient needs to be seen on a weekend, they do not have to wait until Monday to roll around to be seen.
Doctors are seeing this trend on the rise, and they are adapting to the growing field of urgent care medicine. Indeed, there are roughly 20,000 doctors who practice urgent care medicine in the United States today, and that number is growing every day, leaving the pool of doctors who are equipped to handle urgent care situations wide and varied. The concern that the physician a patient sees might not know what they are doing can then be squashed in most cases. Doctors who practice in urgent care centers see a multitude of different scenarios, preparing them for any situation they might encounter with new patients.
The way the American public approach their health and the medical field, the way they want to seek out help, is changing, and the medical field is changing with it, which is a very good sign for the future of the health of the American public.