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Virtue Medical Group > Blog > Blogs > When Should You Visit a Primary Care vs. Urgent Care?

By Virtue Medical Group | Created on: December 6, 2022

Are you stressed from finding either primary care or urgent care for medical treatment? Finding the right medical facility can be unclear, and you may be contemplating whether you should go to either medical facility. You may also be asking yourself, what’s the best primary care? Where is the nearest with open availability? Depending on your situation, read on and see which one is the correct fit for you.

When Should You Visit a Primary Care vs. Urgent Care?

Knowing the difference between a primary care physician/primary care clinic and an urgent care can help you make sure you receive the best possible medical treatment for your needs. Primary care physicians are typically long-term health providers that provide preventive and routine health care, while urgent care centers specialize in treating illnesses or injuries that require immediate attention. Let’s take a closer look at the differences between these two types of medical services.

When & why you should go to a primary care provider or primary care clinic

Primary Care Physicians (PCP)
Primary care physicians are responsible for managing all aspects of your overall healthcare, from preventive medicine to routine health maintenance. Your primary care physician is usually the first person you will see when you have any type of general health concern. In addition to providing routine physical exams, they may also provide mental health services, such as therapy and counseling, as well as specialized treatments for chronic conditions like diabetes and asthma. If you are interested in scheduling an appointment with a PCP, you must first check if the PCP accepts your insurance/medical group, or if they are currently accepting new patients.

Primary Care Clinics
A primary care clinic may consist of multiple providers in a given community. Primary care clinics are intended for preventative and long-term healthcare needs to ensure the patient is in good health. In these clinics, providers will look at your overall health and well-being and create an individualized, tailored plan. For example, at Virtue Medical Group, patients have access to any Virtue Medical Group clinic within their radius. This opportunity gives patients an ultra-convenient option to receive primary care within their reach. Patients usually need to make appointments with their primary care provider in advance or as necessary. Primary care clinics can treat illnesses like colds, flu, allergies, high blood pressure, and diabetes. They also offer physical exams, assessments, screenings, immunizations, health counseling, and referrals to specialists if needed.

When & why you should visit an urgent care center

Urgent Care Centers 
Urgent care centers specialize in treating illnesses or injuries that require immediate attention but are not severe enough to warrant a visit to an emergency room. An urgent care typically provides medical services from a physician’s assistant or a nurse practitioner. The medical facility is convenient because it provides quick diagnosis without waiting for a primary care appointment or spending hours, waiting in an emergency room. Common ailments treated at urgent care centers include colds, flu, cuts or scrapes, sprains and strains, minor fractures, infections, and other non-life-threatening conditions. If there is any chance that your condition could be life-threatening—such as chest pain or difficulty breathing—you should always go to the nearest emergency room instead of an urgent care center. If you think this is right for you, finding an urgent care near you is very simple. Visit SolvHealth to find and book same-day appointments.

Conclusion:

Choosing between a primary care physician and an urgent care center can be difficult if you don’t know which one is right for your situation. Always remember that primary care physicians focus on preventive and routine healthcare while urgent cares specialize in treating illnesses or injuries that require immediate attention but are not life-threatening. If you ever find yourself facing a medical issue that requires prompt treatment but isn’t severe enough for an ER visit, visiting an urgent care center may be your best bet! If you are looking for a primary care clinic with three locations throughout Orange County, CA – contact us

Disclaimer: The following article/blog post contains information about recommended medical facilities. If you are having trouble breathing or feeling symptoms of unexplained discomfort, visit the nearest emergency room or call 911.

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