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ER vs Urgent Care

Should I Go to the Emergency Room or the Urgent Care Room?

In an emergency, you and your family want the best care available in the fastest time possible. While you may require medical treatment, an Urgent Care center—such as one of our Butler Memorial Hospital Fastercare sites—may be an appropriate alternative to an emergency room in some situations. Use this guide to determine when to visit the emergency room or if an Urgent Care center is a more fitting choice.

When to Visit an Emergency Department

Get to an Emergency Department immediately—or call 911 if you have no one to transport you and you are unsafe to drive—if you experience symptoms that are severe, life-threatening, or come on suddenly:

  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Weakness one side/facial droop, garbled speech
  • Fainting/loss of consciousness/change in vision
  • Deep cuts/bleeding that won't stop
  • Sudden, severe pain anywhere in the body
  • High fever/fever with rash
  • Seizures
  • Severe or repeated vomiting
  • Serious burns
  • Change in mental state

When to Visit a BHS FasterCare Center

Consider visiting an Urgent Care Center if you don't feel well and are suffering from symptoms/conditions such as:

  • Colds/flu/fever/cough
  • Sore throat
  • Ear aches
  • Sprains/strains/simple fractures
  • Scrapes/cuts
  • Urinary tract infections
  • Rashes without fever, such as poison ivy or insect bites
  • Back Pain
  • Nausea
  • Minor burns
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