Is it an Emergency? When to go to the ER

When you are sick or injured it is natural to want to rush to the emergency room, but if it isn’t an emergency, this can mean high wait times, high medical bills and high frustration. Before you head to the emergency room, it is important to make sure that what you are experiencing is in fact an emergency. If it is not, either making an appointment with your Primary Care Provider (PCP) or going to an urgent care facility is the best option.

Things such as mild allergic reactions, colds, the flu, insect bites, minor cuts, nausea and sprains are non-emergent needs. These need to be addressed by a PCP. Aliments such as chest pains, broken bones, high fevers, head injuries, severe pain or burns are all considered emergencies and should be treated at the ER.

An emergency is considered a life-threatening situation. If what you are experiencing is non-life threatening, call your PCP. If they are not available, an in-network urgent care is your best option, both financially, and medically.

If you can wait for you PCP, you should. Your PCP has your full medical history, while the ER and urgent care do not.

 

Below we have created an Emergency Flow Chart, it is a good point of reference for determining if what you are experiencing is an emergency. As always, use your best judgement.

 

emergency flow chart 4

 

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Protect yourself against COVID-19 (coronavirus)

Protect yourself against COVID-19 (coronavirus) by covering your nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze and wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If you develop a fever and symptoms of respiratory illness, such as a cough or difficulty breathing, call your primary care provider.

To protect Patients and Staff we are asking:

  • All patients call before walking into the health center
  • Patients 60 years and older accept a telephone visit rather than walking into the health center for an appointment
  • Do NOT bring anyone with you to your appointment unless medically necessary

 

Do NOT come to the health center within your 14 day isolation/quarantine period