8 doctors weighed in:

If we can't do urgent care, is it ok to go to emergency medicine doctor?

8 doctors weighed in
Dr. Ankush Bansal
Internal Medicine
4 doctors agree

In brief: If emergency

Only if it is an emergency.
If it is just a medication refill, minor complaint, question about a chronic problem, or something that can seriously wait til the next business morning, do not go to the er. That is a waste and uses resources and personnel that are needed for true emergencies. But if a true emergency, then go to urgent care. If you can't, then er is fine.

In brief: If emergency

Only if it is an emergency.
If it is just a medication refill, minor complaint, question about a chronic problem, or something that can seriously wait til the next business morning, do not go to the er. That is a waste and uses resources and personnel that are needed for true emergencies. But if a true emergency, then go to urgent care. If you can't, then er is fine.
Dr. Ankush Bansal
Dr. Ankush Bansal
Thank
Dr. Kevin Meyer
Emergency Medicine
1 doctor agrees

In brief: Of course

Yes.

In brief: Of course

Yes.
Dr. Kevin Meyer
Dr. Kevin Meyer
Thank
Dr. Luke Hermann
Emergency Medicine
1 doctor agrees

In brief: Of course

Part of emergency medicine is being prepared to take care of every patient who doesn't have access to another physician.
Although most emergency physicians would prefer that non-emergent issues be dealt with by a patient's primary care physician, at the end of the day it comes with the territory and the most important consideration is that patients have access to doctors.

In brief: Of course

Part of emergency medicine is being prepared to take care of every patient who doesn't have access to another physician.
Although most emergency physicians would prefer that non-emergent issues be dealt with by a patient's primary care physician, at the end of the day it comes with the territory and the most important consideration is that patients have access to doctors.
Dr. Luke Hermann
Dr. Luke Hermann
Thank
1 comment
Dr. Ankush Bansal
I don't agree with that at all. That wastes space in the ER for irresponsible patients who have a doctor but don't plan ahead or even call their doctor for non-emergencies. Saying it comes with the territory encourages this behavior which is part of the reason health care costs are high and people have to wait so long to see an ER doctor for an urgent or emergent condition. If it is serious enough that it can't wait for 12 hours until the end of the day or the next morning, then yes, by all means, see a doctor, including the ER. For those patients that don't have a doctor, after being seen for the acute condition, part of the discharge process should be that the patient is seen by social services to get set up with a local PCP or clinic.
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Dr. William Forsythe
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