Did you know that on average, between five and 20 percent of Americans come down with the flu every year? In the past few decades, urgent care centers have become a hugely popular alternative to people with the flu visiting the emergency room. Another one of the biggest benefits that these centers have provided is the reduce in strain on emergency rooms in the United States. Here are a few more interesting facts.
1. Urgent care centers first began opening up around the United States in the 1970s and have been providing services like anonymous std testing, free std tests, and the general checkups that doctors do when their offices are open.
2. Immediate care facilities, also known as urgent care, are charged with the delivery of ambulatory care in a medical facility that is neither the office of a doctor nor hospital emergency department. Though they do not always, they often work on an unscheduled, walk in basis.
3. Nearly three quarters, 70 percent to be exact, of all physicians at 24 hr urgent care centers are board certified in Family Practice or Emergency Medicine.
4. In just the United States, there are approximately 6,800 immediate care facilities, most of which are located in freestanding buildings.
5. Urgent care centers represent one of the fastest growing segments within the American healthcare system because they do a lot to relieve the stress of emergency rooms and they offer an alternative for people who can not afford to visit an emergency room. Since emergency room visits now number approximately 110 million annually, it is a huge decrease in the burden that urgent care facilities are able to provide.
6. In some states, urgent care centers have point of care prescription dispensing. This means that the patient is able to leave the urgent care facility with a filled prescription rather than needing to go to a pharmacist and wait for it to be filled. This is great when the patient brings in sick children and also helps to limit the spread of germs.
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