What is the difference between an urgent care and a walk-in clinic?
Urgent care clinics and walk-in clinics are similar in many ways, as they both accept walk-in appointments, and neither are equipped to treat life-threatening medical emergencies. At Immediate care of Oklahoma, we proudly provide urgent care services to patients. For more information, call us now. We have 7 convenient locations to serve you in Oklahoma City, OK.
What is the purpose of a walk-in clinic?
A walk-in clinic provides basic medical services to individuals without requiring them to schedule appointments in advance. In this way, walk-in clinics serve as a convenient alternative to primary care clinics or emergency rooms when an individual requires same-day medical attention for a minor illness or injury or for those that do not have a primary care physician. Some of the services and treatments that walk-in clinics commonly provide include the following:
- Cold and flu evaluations
- Diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting
- Ear infections
- Flu shots and immunizations
- Mild fractures, sprains, and strains
- Minor burns, cuts, and lacerations
- Physical examinations
- Pink eye (conjunctivitis)
- Sinus infections
- Sore throat
- Urinary tract infections (UTIs)
What is the purpose of an urgent care clinic?
Urgent care clinics function in a very similar way to walk-in clinics. However, they are typically able to provide more advanced services and treat more severe injuries and illnesses. As such, while both urgent care and walk-in clinics accept walk-in appointments, urgent care clinics conduct patient evaluations for every individual that comes to the clinic for a medical concern. With that being said, urgent care clinics are not sufficiently equipped to treat life-threatening medical emergencies.
Urgent care clinics can provide every service that a walk-in clinic can provide, in addition to treatment for more serious physical injuries and illnesses, x-ray and laboratory services, and other services that vary from clinic to clinic. At Immediate Care of Oklahoma, we provide the following services and treatments:
- Abdominal pain
- Allergic reactions
- Asthma and bronchitis
- Auto accident injuries
- Department of Transportation (DOT) physical exams
- Dislocations, fractures, sprains, and strains
- Drug testing
- Flu shots and immunizations
- Occupational medicine
- On-site laboratory and X-ray services
- Rashes and skin infections
- Strep throat
- Suture removal
- Tuberculosis (TB) testing
- Walk-in electrocardiogram (EKG) services
- Wellness shots
- Worker’s compensation injury management and treatment
- Wound care
Are urgent cares more convenient than an ER?
In many ways, an urgent care clinic can be much more convenient than either your primary care doctor or the emergency room. If you require same-day medical attention for a medical concern that is not life-threatening, an urgent care clinic will likely be your best option. Primary care clinics typically require appointments to be made in advance, while emergency rooms often have long wait times for patients who have medical concerns that are not critical or life-threatening. Moreover, the services at an urgent care clinic will most likely be much less expensive than those provided in an emergency room.
Is it better to go to an ER or an urgent care?
If both the urgent care clinic and the emergency room are open, there is typically one determining factor to consider when deciding if you should go to the emergency room or urgent care clinic for medical attention. That determining factor is if your medical concern is a life-threatening medical emergency or not. If it is, then you should go to your nearest emergency room immediately. If your medical concern is not a life-threatening medical emergency, then you will likely save both time and money by going to an urgent care clinic.
For more information about the difference between urgent care and walk-in clinics or to see one of our doctors at Immediate Care of Oklahoma, we welcome to call us, schedule an appointment through our website, or visit one of our seven clinics in Edmond, Norman, Yukon, and Oklahoma City, OK, for a walk-in appointment. We serve patients from West Moore OK, Norman (HealthPlex) OK, Norman (24th) OK, Edmond OK, Yukon OK, I-240 & Sooner RD OK, Tecumseh OK, and Bethany OK.