Are you feeling sick but unsure where you should seek treatment for your condition? Depending on the nature of your condition, there are two options you can try: urgent care and online care. Let’s talk about the differences between the two to help you determine which you might need for a particular situation.
Urgent care is an excellent option if you have an acute condition that may require immediate medical attention but is not severe enough to be considered life-threatening.
Here are some conditions/injuries treated at an urgent care facility:
- Gastric complaints (diarrhea, vomiting, stomachache, etc.)
- Minor injuries
- Sore throats
- Strains and sprains
- Uncomplicated fractures
- Urinary tract infections
In an urgent care setting, a medical practitioner will perform a thorough evaluation, which typically consists of ordering blood work or diagnostic imaging to confirm a diagnosis. After that, they might give you prescriptions or suggest possible treatment plans to help with your symptoms. You might be referred to a specialist, when your condition calls for it.
Virtual healthcare provides an extremely useful avenue for non-emergency care. It can be used across almost every field in medicine —from primary care to post-surgical management.
A virtual care platform is aimed at addressing a multitude of acute and chronic medical conditions and purposes, such as the following:
- Cough or cold
- Ongoing care for diabetes
- Post-surgical follow-ups
- Prescription refills
- Skin rashes and infections
- Therapy and counseling
Seeking treatment at an urgent care facility means you are at the mercy of the waiting room and you will have to sit next to other sick people. With online care, on the other hand, all you need are your smartphone or laptop and an internet access, and you can instantly have access to quality healthcare. What this ultimately translates into is that you don’t have to put up with any type of inconvenience and the anxiety and risk of being exposed to other people’s illnesses.
On top of that, online care ensures continuity of care, as it eliminates the need to travel. This is especially beneficial if you happen to live in a rural community and transportation might be an issue.
Nonetheless, online care is not devoid of downsides. Here are the most common:
- Electronic glitches- Technology is only as good as the electrical current that keeps it running. Your virtual consultation with a doctor can easily be disrupted by poor internet connection, inclement weather that may cause a power outage or loss of internet connection, and other challenges.
- Inadequate assessment- Having the ability to interface with a doctor is a major plus, but you have to consider that if you have multiple health issues going on at the same time and that you need a doctor to physically examine you, virtual care is not a good option at all.
The Bottom Line
Whether it’s urgent care or online care, keep in mind that while both typically cater to non-emergency situations, each has its unique advantages and disadvantages.
Consider urgent care if you’re unsure of your condition but can visit a clinic, or if your condition warrants a thorough medical assessment. Keep in mind that medical conditions aren’t always clear-cut, and their symptoms tend to overlap.
If you don’t have the time or the physical ability to do this, or if you happen to live in a remote area, online care might be a better option.
Urgent Care Facility in Fairless Hills, PA
At Patient Care Now Urgent Care, we have a board-certified physician who’s always on standby to provide high-quality immediate care for acute illnesses or injuries—which are impossible to effectively handle in a virtual setting.
We have a spacious facility and sophisticated medical equipment that allow us to provide effective treatments normally reserved for the emergency room, such as sutures for lacerations, fracture care, nebulizer treatments, and even IV fluids.
We accept walk-ins, or you can check-in online for added convenience. If you have any questions or concerns, call us at (267) 202-6433. We’re here for you seven days a week. 365 days a year!