Pain medications are often prescribed for those with acute injuries and pain that is beyond the scope of a doctor’s ability to treat.
Some pain medication is available over the counter, but more may only be available by prescription.
The most common prescription pain medications are prescription-strength acetaminophen and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil) and naproxen (Aleve).
Other common prescription medications include:
- Opioids (morphine, hydrocodone, oxycodone, fentanyl)
- Tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs) such as amitriptyline
- Anticonvulsants such as gabapentin (Neurontin), carbamazepine (Tegretol), and phenytoin (Dilantin)
How do I know if I should see an urgent care?
If you have a minor injury, such as a sprain or strain, an urgent care clinic may be able to treat the injury, but it will rely on your ability to pay.
If you have a more severe injury, such as a fracture or open wound, an urgent care clinic may be able to treat the injury, but it will rely on a referral from your doctor.
How much does urgent care cost?
Urgent care centers charge a variety of fees for services. These fees can vary, depending on the level of care you receive, such as:
- A basic medical exam
- An x-ray
- A blood test
- An MRI scan
- An ultrasound
- A consultation
- Treatment for a condition that requires a hospital stay
Average urgent care costs
A 2016 survey of urgent care centers in Chicago, Illinois, found that the median in-network urgent care cost was $25. This cost was significantly higher than the average cost of $14.
The average cost of an in-network urgent care visit in the survey was $7.50, and the median cost was $9.
Urgent care centers can charge a fee for diagnostic imaging, such as a CT scan, or a fee for a hospital stay.
Urgent care centers have been subject to scrutiny in recent years over the fees they charge for services. Some urgent care centers have been found to charge higher fees than the national average.
For example, a 2015 study found that among urgent care centers in the United States, the median cost for an in-network doctor visit was $45.
The costs of an in-network urgent care visit can depend on a variety of factors, including the location, the type of care you receive, and the provider.
How do I find an urgent care?
There are a variety of ways to find an urgent care center. The most common way to find an urgent care center is through a search engine, such as Google, Bing, or Yahoo.
A search for “urgent care” or “urgent care clinics” will return a list of urgent care centers around the country.
Some urgent care centers are open 24 hours per day, seven days a week. Others may only provide limited hours.
If you have a specific health concern that requires immediate attention, you may find it easier to find an urgent care center than to make an appointment with a doctor.
An urgent care center may be able to help diagnose the condition and provide treatment options.
How do I find a clinic?
Urgent care centers are often found through a local hospital, medical center, or health insurance provider.
They may also be located in the community or in a hotel or shopping mall.
The urgent care center you choose will depend on where you live. For example, urgent care centers in more populated areas may be able to see patients more quickly than those in rural areas.
You can find a list of urgent care centers in your area through the American Association of Urgent Care Centers website.
The American Society of Anesthesiologists website also has a list of anesthesiology urgent care centers.
How to find an urgent care center?
1. Check if your urgent care center is in your area.
2. Search for urgent care centers in your area through the American Association of Urgent Care Centers website.
3. Check if your healthcare provider accepts Medicare, Medicaid, or Tricare.
How do I pay for urgent care?
There are a few ways to pay for urgent care. You can:
- Use a credit card
- Pay with a check or money order
- Apply for a tax refund
Your healthcare provider or insurance plan may have negotiated rates with urgent care centers. You may also be able to find a lower cost option if you pay cash.
To find out the cost of urgent care, you can:
- Contact your healthcare provider.
- Search for urgent care centers in your area through the American Association of Urgent Care Centers website.
- Check with your insurance plan.
You can also call your insurance company to find out if you have a preferred provider organization (PPO) plan.
Some insurance companies may offer a lower rate for urgent care than for in-network care.
What is the difference between an urgent care center and a walk-in clinic?
Urgent care centers are often referred to as “walk-in clinics.”
A walk-in clinic is a type of medical clinic that is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It is typically staffed by a doctor and a nurse.
Urgent care is also a type of medical clinic, but it offers a different type of service.
Instead of being open 24 hours a day, urgent care is open only during the hours you need medical attention.
You can call the clinic for an appointment and be seen within minutes.
What happens during an urgent care visit?
An urgent care visit is a fast and convenient way to receive treatment for a health condition.
During your visit, your provider will:
- Ask about your symptoms
- Ask about your medical history
- Perform a physical exam
- Perform diagnostic testing
- Determine the best treatment
You may receive diagnostic testing, such as:
- Blood work
- Imaging tests
- A skin biopsy
Depending on the diagnosis, you may receive treatment for the condition that requires urgent care.
The treatments provided at urgent care include:
- Minor procedures, such as bandages
- Minor treatments, such as a tetanus shot
- Radiology services
Depending on the treatment, you may need to be admitted to the hospital for a short or long period of time.
An urgent care center is a type of health care facility that provides a variety of medical services, including:
- Medical exams
- Basic surgeries
- Emergency care
- Mental health services
- Prescription medications
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