Express Care Center or Emergency Department – which is the right place for your illness or injury?
The decision of whether to head to a neighborhood express care center or an emergency department relies in part on an expectation of what is required to care for your problem.
A visit to a MetroExpressCare has the advantage of being convenient – there are many throughout the community. Also, there is usually a shorter wait and a lower charge than at an emergency department.
An emergency department has the advantage of having more robust services and equipment, additional medical staff for consultations and more diagnostic capabilities. Also, if necessary, you most likely would be admitted to the same facility.
How do you know which is the right place for you? The following will help you decide.
If you twisted your ankle playing weekend softball, at an express care location you can usually get an x-ray and a splint if needed. You would be referred to an orthopedic office if you need a cast.
On the other hand, if you twisted your ankle sliding into home base and now there is bone sticking out - that is something that requires the emergency department.
Perhaps you developed a cough and now you are bringing up some phlegm. At at an express care location you could get a prescription, and an x-ray if they suspect pneumonia.
If you got stung by a bee and now have some swelling where you got stung, you likely can get appropriate treatment at at an express care location.
If you got stung and now are swelling up all over and have difficulty breathing, you should go to the emergency room.
We are heading into flu season and hopefully you got your flu shot.
Putting it All Together
Express care is a go-to for symptoms like a runny nose, cough, sore throat, earache or a sprain.
MetroHealth Services Near You
The system also offers four emergency department locations in Brecksville, Cleveland (main campus), Cleveland Heights and Parma.
For more information, visit metrohealth.org/care-now.