Hospital Emergency Room

May 09

The healthcare industry is an entity which constantly changes. Where once you would have to wait to visit your primary physician when you didn’t feel well, you can now go to any number of clinics which offer a similar service of check-up and ordering medicine without the need for an appointment. And while these locations are plentiful, they tend to be open only a certain period of time and closed on various holidays. And when this happens, it means a visit to a hospital emergency room.

Well, at least it used to. Within the Houston area there are a number of independent and hospital-affiliate, 24-hour emergency clinics now open. For example, if you do a search on the internet for “24 hr emergency clinic cypress tx” you’ll find at least three locations.

How do these clinics differ over standard medical outlets, besides their 24-hour status? First, should you require ambulance service, you may be sent to a location like Cypress Creek ER if it is closer than the local hospital. Second, standalone ERs are fully staffed with emergency personnel who are trained to deal with traumatic injuries. Third, unlike some regular clinics, standalone ERs provide the necessary equipment to handle stitches or cast bone breaks.

These clinics may also have more extensive imaging centers and labs for quicker turnaround and diagnosis as well as an in-house pharmacy where one can obtain prescriptions during times when outside locations are normally closed. Many of these ERs also feature out-patient treatments for those who need stitches or casts removed.

What standalone, 24-hour ERs don’t have is bed space. In other words, if your illness or injury requires an overnight stay, the clinic will send you to a local hospital it is affiliated with via ambulance or on your own power. Check their policies on this before you visit. Another item to consider in your search for a standalone ER is patient reviews. These can be found on the Internet at various sites. Check these reviews for patient care, treatment turnaround, cleanliness, and issues with billing. Read both the positive and negative views to get a sense of the ER clinic’s true nature.

For the most part, most standalone ERs are not sham operations with untrained staff. Those who work there have been involved in emergency medicine for years or are currently training toward that path. Should you be injured or ill and are in need of medical treatment in the middle of the night, make sure you’re familiar with the standalone ERs in your area. In the end, your life could depend on it.