When Should You Choose the Walk-in Clinic Over the Emergency Room?

People often ask the question of whether they should seek treatment at an emergency room or walk-in clinic. Many may assume that they should go to the emergency room, when their problem could be taken care of at a walk-in clinic. This article will tell you a little bit about when you should visit the walk-in clinic and when you should seek help at the emergency room. 

When you should visit the walk-in clinic

What do you do when you are sick or you have troublesome symptoms that need attention right away? You may discover a terrible rash or you may even wake up with a pink eye. In these circumstances, you need to be sooner than later and just don't have time to make an appointment and wait several days to be seen by your primary care provider.

These illnesses are not always a true emergency, and therefore you should not always visit the emergency room. Walk-in clinics such as One Stop Medical Centre & Boniface Park Medical Centre are great options for you to visit when it is not a true emergency, but you need urgent care. 

  • Worsening symptoms—If you or your child has been sick with the cold, flu, or other illness and the symptoms have not subsided within a week or are getting much worse.
  • Sprains and severe cuts or bruises—especially those that cannot be treated at home.
  • Eye infection—this includes redness, itchiness, thick discharge, and pain.
  • Insect bites—specifically those that increase significantly in redness and swelling.

When you should go to the emergency room

In the case of many emergencies, you will likely know it when you see it. Examples of this include car accidents, strokes, or even kidney stones. Many sudden, unexpected events will necessitate a visit at the emergency room. Other examples of emergencies include:

  • Chest pain—this could signify a heart attack
  • Allergic reaction—If you have allergies, you may carry an epi-pen or medicine, but you need to seek medical attention immediately if you have a reaction. It is especially an emergency if the allergic reacion affects the airway and inhibits breathing. 
  • Suicide—Attempted or planned suicide is a true emergency that requires immediate medical attention
  • Abdominal pain
  • Seizures

The truth is that the lines of where to seek medical attention are often gray. How do you know whether or not it is a true emergency? The most important thing you can do is to seek help by healthcare professionals who can give you the help you need.