Urgent care clinics are becoming popular with people who do not have a regular 'family' doctor to visit their houses and help them with medical care, when they fall sick. But choosing a correct urgent care clinic is important to ensure that proper medical aid is obtained. Some tips are of use for making a proper choice.
Many clinics nowadays are staffed with nurses who do care, but many of these clinics do not have a physician on their rolls. For urgent care, availability of a doctor who can diagnose the illness and prescribe proper treatment and medication is extremely important. Equally important is the availability, in house or by a commercial arrangement outside, of a lab for doing routine tests like blood, urine, x-ray, etc. If these facility is not readily available, lot of time will be wasted, in case some tests have to be done, which is the case most of the time.
Another important factor is the location of the clinic. A hospital which is away from the city usually does not attract much clientele, and so has comparatively less experience in dealing with different illness and with patients of different ages, compared to a clinic which is centrally located and easily accessible to many. Location is also equally important from the point of view of the time taken to go over there; less transit time, better. A general hospital with facilities for many general illnesses is better than a super specialty hospital, particularly when we do not know what the illness is.
A general hospital which has doctors who can attend to general ailments, who have seen many patients with many types of diseases, and which has a laboratory to diagnose all types of diseases for urgent care is far better in such situations than a specialty hospital: the illness may not be of a particular specialization.
If we are able to locate an urgent care clinic with the specifications discussed above and with people who care, it is good substitute for a family doctor of old times. We can make or consider it a place where we go comfortably for a treatment or check up, whenever we need one, without any reservation and with the knowledge that we will be cared for.