PDT Staff Writer
Summertime can be the most fun time of the year. People get to do more things outside where they have not been able to all winter, at the parks, pools, playgrounds, lakes and the woods. However, with that freedom comes more chances to suffer injuries, and sometimes people find it difficult to decide whether that injury requires the services of an emergency room or an urgent care center. Mary Kate Dilts-Skaggs, director of nursing for Emergency, Pediatrics and Outpatient Services at Southern Ohio Medical Center says that while there are exceptions, there are also some guidelines that may help people make decisions as to where to seek medical attention.
“My list for the Emergency Department would start with chest pain, abdominal pain, stroke symptoms, like if somebody had a change in their vision; or one-sided weakness on the body - arms or legs - or the inability to speak all of a sudden, that would go with some stroke symptoms,” Dilts-Skaggs said. “The worst headache of your life would be more like an E-D. And people usually in automobile accidents or some injury or accident at home, like falling off a roof or falling off a ladder, that type of thing.”
Dilts-Skaggs said other illnesses and injuries may need the care provided at an Urgent Care facility.
“Colds, cough, flu symptoms, ankle strains, muscle strains, those kinds of things,” Dilts-Skaggs said. “Urgent Care is a great alternative. Usually you can get in and out faster than in an Emergency Department. And they’re usually less costly than the Emergency Department.”
Dilts-Skaggs said most of the time an Urgent Care facility has a relationship with an Emergency Department, an if an Urgent Care identifies something they are more concerned about, they will send that patient to the Emergency Department for further testing or treatment.
Frank Lewis may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 232, or at firstname.lastname@example.org