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3 Mistakes to Avoid When Going to an Urgent Care Clinic
Freestanding urgent care clinics have ‘popped up’ all over the place across America. According to a Becker’s Hospital Review article and the Urgent Care Association of America, there are 9,000 urgent care clinics in the US and 40% expect to expand their existing site or open new sites.
Often, the primary medical reasons that people go to urgent care clinics are:
* upper respiratory tract infection (e.g. cold, flu, cough from an acute infection, nasal congestion)
* urinary tract infection (often referred to as a UTI)
* joint and muscle sprains and strains (e.g. twisted ankle)
Often, the primary personal reason that people go to urgent care clinics is:
* Convenient location
* Convenient appointment availability
Here are 4 Mistakes to Avoid When Going to an Urgent Care Clinic:
1. Know how your insurance covers urgent care visits before you go. If you have a PPO plan, often the urgent care copay is MORE than a regular office visit copay (e.g. $75 urgent care copay vs. $50 specialist copay vs. $25 primary care copay). However, usually urgent care copays are LESS than emergency room visit copays (which are often $100 or more).
2. Some ‘urgent care clinics’ are actually hospital emergency rooms in DISGUISE. If an urgent care clinic is associated with a hospital (and sometimes even if it is not), it will consider itself an ER and bill like an ER. You need to ask the urgent care clinic in advance if it bills as urgent care or as an ER and get the name of the person who tells you. Just because they tell you ‘yes, it will be billed as urgent care’ does not mean that it will. If 30 days later you receive a bill for an ER visit, you can go back to the billing office of the urgent care center armed with the employee’s name who told you differently.
3. If you have an established relationship with a doctor and they can't see you, check to see if there are primary care clinics that accept same day appointments. Physician Partners of America have such clinics in the Tampa Bay Area. Most can see you the same day and have you out the door in an hour.
Physician Partners of America is pleased to announce that Dr. Maria Del Rosario Gomez , has joined its Habana practice effective February 1, 2017. Her new office is located at 4726 N. Habana
Ste 300 Tampa Florida 33614
Moved by the desire to truly make a difference in peoples’ lives, Dr. Maria Del Rosario Gomez is a primary care physician with the Florida Primary Care Group.
Born in Cuba and raised in Spain, Dr. Gomez later decided to begin her career in medicine. She had the opportunity to attend Universidad Complutense de Madrid (University of Madrid), and went on to have an extensive academic career that would prepare her for the success that lay ahead of her as a physician. She received her bachelor’s degree from Instituto Osvaldo Herrero of Santa Clara, Cuba. After attending medical school, she interned and started her residency at Franklin Square Hospital. She completed her residency at Helen Fuld Medical Center.
“We are excited to have Dr. Maria Del Rosario Gomez join our Physician Partners of America family,” said PPOA Presiden Dr Gari. “She shares our philosophy of providing convenient, compassionate, coordinated care based on the latest medical evidence.”
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