Finding the Right Health Care Option Is an Important Consumer Decision

The local hospital was completely puzzled. When you took your 12 year old son to the emergency room on Saturday night, his high fever and rash were the only symptoms. He was admitted and is still in the hospital. The doctors are thinking maybe he was bitten by a tick but they are not sure yet. Still testing. The swelling in his neck is very concerning.

By day two, the local hospital reported that two of the three tests should come back by day three, but the other third test can take up to 14 days. Your son’s neck is a little less swollen, and he has a little more spunk. It also seems like he is not in as much pain. His rash, however, is worse. Fevers and heart rate have mostly stayed down since he was admitted, but he is obviously staying in the local hospital again for another night.

On the third day the tick panel came back negative, so you are back to square one. His rash is not any better, in fact, it seems worse. Swelling in his neck has gone down some, but has settled in his chest and shoulders and is causing him to not be able to hold his head straight. He gets dizzy when he stands up and is off balance. Fortunately, the fever and heart rate are staying down. The doctors are changing his antibiotics, and sending him for CT today.

Finding the Solution to Your Health Situation Does Not Always Involve a Hospital Emergency Room

If you have an alarming situation where fevers and breathing are a problem, it is necessary to seek emergency care, in many other situations, however, an urgent care nearby may be all that is needed. In every health situation it is important that you make a judgement call about what kind of care that is needed. It is in your best interest, however, to avoid seeking time consuming and expensive care at a hospital emergency room if it is not needed.

As many as 44% to 65% of all ER episodes could have been treated in urgent care clinic settings, according to a private study conducted by Milliman. And while you always want to be on the safe side, it is not necessary, or advised, to crowd an emergency room with minor injuries or illnesses.

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