Cold and flu season is here again, and even in the warmest parts of the country, adults and children are preparing by getting themselves vaccinated against the flu. While cold and flu germs can flourish even in the most temperate climates, people who take a few precautions should find that they can avoid missing time from work and school. Urgent care express facilities see thousands of patients every week, and many come in with ear infections, strep throat, and sinus problems.
Many people do not realize that germs and viruses can accumulate on porous surfaces like bathtubs. Older tubs with worn finishes may be harboring millions of bacteria, more than doorknobs and cell phones combined. Health websites frequently note, however, that our cell phones may be making us sick, and recommend frequent cleaning of all electronic devices, especially after children handle them.
Urgent care express locations can also dispense flu shots, perform annual wellness exams for school and work, and can often provide care for broken bones or smaller fractures. While urgent care hours can vary by location, finding a local urgent care provider can both minimize co-payments and allow patients a more flexible treatment schedule. Losing time from work to attend medical appointments can make employers reluctant to promote or even to retain employees, regardless of their length of service with the company.
A substantial percentage of urgent care express facilities are owned by a doctor or by a group of doctors, who consistently report that they strive to provide speedy, precise care to local patients. In general, the cost of an urgent care visit should be a fraction of the cost of a visit to an emergency room, and urgent care centers continue to increase the sophistication of electronic equipment in an effort to keep pace with larger hospitals.
Increasingly, hospitals and urgent medical care facilities alike rely upon advanced, digital patient tracking software. Having the ability to schedule referrals, to prescribe medication and to track its fulfillment at pharmacies, and to schedule follow-up appointments for new patients can help smaller locations deliver consistent, relevant medical service to millions of people every year.
In the next several years, medical consumers should also expect more precise tracking of their prescriptions to be possible: the term “pharmaceutical serialization” refers to a worldwide movement to apply more stringent tracking and recall procedures to millions of units of prescription medications. As consumer demand for high-tech medical care continues to swell, the medical infrastructure will also shift and evolve. Small urgent care centers are on the front lines of patient care, and should be expected to keep pace with new technological developments.