Walk-in clinic vs urgent care vs ER: Know when to go | Aetna

– Walk in clinic, urgent
care center, emergency room? Know where to go for the care you need. Where’s the best place to
find fast, effective care for a sprained ankle? What about a bad cold? Or recurring lower back pain? Choosing the appropriate
place to go for treatment is a big part of receiving
the most efficient care. A walk-in clinic is usually
a good option to consider for minor illnesses and injuries. These walk-in neighborhood
clinics treat health issues like, cold and flu symptoms. Sore and strep throat. Ear ache, or allergies. A walk-in clinic like the MinuteClinic inside many CVS pharmacy locations, Walgreens Healthcare Clinic, or Kroger’s The Little Clinic, can treat these types of issues and help you feel better fast. Most are staffed by
certified nurse practitioners and physician assistants, accept walk-ins and are open seven days a week. But what if you have a more serious but not life threatening situation? Then you should go to
an urgent care center. Urgent care centers can treat things like, sprains and fractures,
cuts that require stitches, or lower back and joint pain. Urgent care centers are also staffed by certified nurse practitioners
and physician assistants, as well as other licensed practitioners. Many also offer additional
services to what you would find in a walk-in clinic like imaging, x-rays and lab services on site. Walk-in clinics and urgent care centers can handle many health problems. But you should go to an emergency room if you experience intense
and unexpected symptoms like, chest pain, difficulty
breathing or severe bleeding. Emergency rooms have a wider range of specialists and treatment options so they are equipped to
handle more serious issues. If you still aren’t sure where to go and want to get more information
about available options, call our toll-free 24/7 nurse line. At 1-800-556-1555. (upbeat happy music)

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