Primary Care Offers You More Than Urgent Care
Where to schedule an appointment when you’re injured or feeling sick might be a decision you typically base on the day of the week or office hours, and there is absolutely a place in our busy lives for Urgent Care. But not as a substitute for seeing your Primary Care Physician.
At the top of the list of why Primary Care offers more than Urgent Care is that your primary care provider is the one doctor that should know everything about you, which includes everything from your known allergies to family medical history. And in the event you might need to see a specialist, your insurance provider will likely require a referred from your PCP.
So if you’re wondering which healthcare provider to call when you’re suffering from a sore throat or your ankle is starting to swell, here is a handy checklist for you to consider.
When to see your Primary Care Physician
Your primary care physician should be your family doctor for acute care, seasonal illness or chronic condition management. Contact your primary care physician if you’re experiencing symptoms and conditions such as:
- Annual physicals, checkups and immunizations
- Cough, cold, flu and sore throat
- Ear and Sinus infections
- Minor acute injuries like sprains, bumps and bruises
- Skin problems or rashes
- Urinary tract infections
- Prescriptions and refills
- Anything that may require a referral to labs, imaging or a specialist
When to Visit Urgent Care
Urgent Care is great for patients whose illnesses or injuries don’t present as life-threatening but maybe can’t wait until an appointment with your primary care physician –– as the number one advantage of urgent care center is same day appointments.
You should go to the urgent care if your PCP is unavailable or you’re experiencing these symptoms and conditions:
- Fever without a rash or infection
- Non-life threatening allergic reactions
- Pain or ringing in your ear
- Painful urination
- Persistent nausea, vomiting or diarrhea
- Sore throat and painful cough
- Minor trauma, like sprains or shallow cuts
When to Visit Emergency Care
If you are experiencing anything life-threatening such as chest pain, or something extremely painful resulting from trauma such as a fractured limb or excessive bleeding from a wound –– you should seek Emergency Care immediately.
Telemedicine Increases PCP Accessibility
Hours of operation are less of a deterrent in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, as most practices and primary care physicians are now available for virtual appointments. Your PCP can perform almost 60% of what they can in-person via a telemedicine appointment because of their knowledge of your medical history, and that includes everything from prescription refills to ordering labs.
At Synergy Health 360, our mission is to provide integrated care, everywhere. So if you don’t have a primary care physician or you haven’t seen us in a while, we invite you to connect with us and learn more about our virtual options so we can be there for you in your time of need.