If you’re like most parents, you’d always rather be safe than sorry when it comes to your child’s health. While that can protect your child from health issues, it also causes some overreactions, particularly when it comes to babies. In most cases, you can take your baby to urgent care rather than to the emergency room.
Common sense and general pediatric guidelines will help guide you when it comes time to take your baby to urgent care. For example, fevers in infants younger than two months are always an ER-worthy trip, for older kids, they’re more routine. Other times when you should take your baby straight to the ER include:
If your child hits his head and loses consciousness, take him to the emergency room.
A seizure incident should always be followed by a trip to the emergency room.
Large Cuts on the Face
Babies and small children may need sedation during suturing.
Babies suffering respiratory distress should receive hospital-grade care as soon as possible.
Including dry lips and lethargy or confusion.
In many other cases, it’s not just acceptable to take a baby to urgent care, but a better health decision. If your child’s illness isn’t severe, she may not receive immediate treatment, as hospitals triage patients and provide the ones with most urgent needs care first. Taking a baby to urgent care instead of an emergency room also eliminates exposing her to the aggressive germs sometimes found in hospitals.
As with older children and adults, taking a baby to urgent care will likely be significantly less expensive than an emergency room visit. You’ll receive the same level of care, but most insurers’ urgent care copay and deductibles are much less than ER visits. If paying cash you’ll avoid the charge for emergency-level care that comes with ER care.