Family care providers are extremely important if you take the health of you and your family seriously. But while some people have family health care plans provided through their employer, other families are either severely underinsured, on public health insurance, or lack any health insurance coverage at all.
No matter your family’s insurance situation, there are many benefits to visiting family care providers rather than just going to the emergency room for every little medical situation. Recently, many urgent care clinics have begun offering family care services, which have provided a lifeline for many underinsured families across the country.
Yet unfortunately, many families still aren’t taking advantage of these vital healthcare resources. So if you lack a generous health insurance plan, here are the four main ways you can benefit from visiting urgent care centers that double as family care providers.
Continually going to the emergency room can seriously put a dent in your family’s pocket. Even one trip, according to the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey, averages around $1,318. If it’s an actual emergency, that’s totally fine, but if you’re just looking for minor medical assistance or counsel, going to the emergency room is not worth it.
It’s called urgent care for a reason.
Another major benefit of working with family care providers is the immediacy with which they can provide medical assistance. Over a six-year period, between 2003 and 2009, the mean wait time in emergency rooms increased from 46.5 minutes to 58.1. That’s too long to wait when your family’s closest walk in clinic can see you just about any time to provide family quick care.
One of the reasons the wait time in emergency rooms is so long is simply because there aren’t enough people working for the hospital to assist everyone. The same goes for most primary care offices. The United States needs approximately 52,000 more primary care physicians by 2025 to handle our healthcare needs.
Even if you rely on a local walk in clinic for basic family care and preventative services, it’s still worthwhile to develop a relationship with primary care physicians as well. It’s important to do plenty of research during your primary care physician search before you commit to one doctor, because this medical professional could be in charge of your family’s medical issues for a long time to come.
When you need to, you can still visit the ER for emergencies and urgent care clinics for after hours and urgent medical issues.
The best part of having your own family care providers, however, is simply the relationships you build with these people. You’re not just a patient number to them, like you would be at some hospitals.
Instead, you and your family will receive personal medical attention and feel like you’re so much more than just another patient to them.