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   Many common sports injuries can be treated at urgent orthopedic care facilities with much less hassle than a hospital. GETTING TREATED : By...

   Many common sports injuries can be treated at urgent orthopedic care facilities with much less hassle than a hospital.

GETTING TREATED : By Hunter Greene, M.D. 

   Broken bones, sprains and other injuries happen when we least expect them: on the playing field, on the job, and even in our own backyards. When an injury occurs, we often turn to the nearest emergency room or urgent care clinic for treatment. However, these are not always the best options. 

   In a hospital emergency room, you run the risk of a long wait time, exposure to others’ conditions, and a costly medical bill. And a traditional urgent care clinic, while convenient for many medical problems, usually lacks the expertise of an orthopedic professional.

   For an urgent orthopedic problem or injury, an orthopedic urgent care clinic can offer a less expensive, less stressful alternative to the ER, with the orthopedic expertise you may not find at a standard urgent care clinic. At an orthopedic urgent care clinic, patients access care from orthopedic specialists during and after normal business hours. Patients are accepted on a walk-in basis and typically are seen in less than an hour.

   Orthopedic urgent care clinics are staffed with trained orthopedic professionals who provide a complete array of treatments for conditions such as:

   >> Complex fractures

   >> Sprains and strains

   >> Cuts and abrasions

   >> Musculoskeletal pain or injuries

   >> Concussion evaluation

   >> Sports injuries

   >> Injuries resulting from an accident or fall

   >> Painful or swollen joints

   >> Sudden or acute pain

   Most orthopedic urgent care clinics have on-site digital X-ray facilities, casting/splinting capabilities, and the ability to repair lacerations. The specialists at an orthopedic urgent care clinic will follow you from diagnosis and treatment through your rehabilitation and recovery, while a general practitioner or emergency room physician may refer you to an orthopedic specialist for follow up care.

   Typically, urgent care centers contract with most major health plans and patients’ insurance is verified at the time of service. As with any medical appointment, be sure to bring your current valid insurance ID with you. Knowledge of medical history and medications you’re currently taking is also helpful.

   Unlike an emergency room, orthopedic urgent care clinics are not equipped to care for severe injuries or non-orthopedic problems, such as chest pain, and are typically not open 24-hours-a-day. In addition, orthopedic urgent care clinics are not designed to treat life-threatening medical emergencies. If you do experience a life-threatening emergency, you should always call 911. 

   Due to the smaller scale and lower volume of patients, orthopedic urgent care clinics can provide efficient care, saving you time and money. The next time you’re injured, remember that an orthopedic urgent care clinic offers a convenient alternative for receiving high quality care.

Check out this article in the digital edition of SportStars Magazine… Avoid the ER 

Previous Article… Knee Knowledge 


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