Defining Urgent Care

Health Care

Have you ever awakened in the middle of the night racked by a penetrating pain in your abdomen? Do you have a swollen ankle from tripping over the dog? Is your child running a temperature? When anything like this occurs, you wonder whether you should go to the emergency room (ER) or visit urgent care. In Salt Lake City, while both options are possible, how do you know whether you need urgent care over emergency care?

What Is It?

Urgent care is a type of same-day, walk-in clinic. You have to be able to make your way into the facility without needing an ambulance. This category of facility is designed to treat those issues requiring urgent i.e. immediate attention. It is not equipped, however, to handle illnesses or injuries that dedicate the specialized care of an ER.  In Salt Lake City, they act as a stopgap when your own physician is not available.

Types of Urgent Care Medical Conditions

A medical condition is urgent if it requires care within 24 hours but does not qualify as an emergency. Some conditions that meet these criteria are:

    • Accidents – sprains and strains
    • Acute sore throat or cough
    • Breathing difficulties
    • Bleeding cuts that requiring stitches
    • Dehydration
    • Diagnostic services – these can include X-rays, imaging and various lab tests
    • Falls
    • Fever or flu
    • Minor broken finger bones and toe fractures
    • Persistent Diarrhea
    • Skin rashes
    • Urinary tract infections
    • Vomiting

These care facilities in Salt Lake City will evaluate and then treat the health problems.

Urgent Care

If your doctor is unavailable or you cannot obtain an appointment, you may have to look elsewhere for medical treatment. If the illness or condition is very severe, you can visit an ER. If it is not, you have another choice, and that is visiting an urgent care center. Depending upon where you live in Salt Lake City, you just may find one around the corner, waiting to treat and release you in the same day.