Book an appointment Feather-communication-phone
Urgent Care VS Doctor

Blog Online Doctor

Urgent Care Vs Primary Care

writtenByWritten by: Leah McCabe
Leah McCabe

Leah McCabe

Leah likes writing about health and science subjects. Through her writing she hopes to help people of all backgrounds have equal access to information and quality healthcare.

Read more posts by this author.

January 14, 2021 Read Time - 4 minutes

Is it Cheaper to Go to Urgent Care or a Doctor?

A common question people ask is whether it’s cheaper to go to urgent care or a primary care doctor. The truth is, the price depends on a lot of variables:

  • Some insurance companies charge the same copay for urgent care vs doctor appointments. Others charge more for urgent care than primary care doctor visits.
  • If you don’t have insurance, it’s less clear which is cheaper. Often, a primary care doctor will be cheaper, but their prices aren’t always upfront. On the other hand, many urgent care clinics have their prices posted and easy to see.

Without insurance, the cheapest option may be an online doctor like PlushCare. Online doctors have lower overhead costs than other doctors and can charge less.

In any case, you should try to avoid the emergency room unless your condition is serious. Emergency rooms are by far the most expensive type of care. They often cost $500 or more.

  • Book on our free mobile app or website.

    Our doctors operate in all 50 states and same day appointments are available every 15 minutes.

  • See a doctor, get treatment and a prescription at your local pharmacy.

  • Use your health insurance just like you normally would to see your doctor.

PlushCare-App-Steps

What Can You Get Done at Urgent Care?

It can be confusing to know when to go to urgent care vs a doctor. Here are a few things you can get treated at urgent care:

Painful urination

Ear pain

Fever without a rash

Sore throat

Vomiting or diarrhea

Mild sprains, cuts, or fractures

Non-life-threatening allergic reactions

Minor insect stings or bites

Many of these things can also be treated with an online doctor appointment.

Does Urgent Care Have Real Doctors?

Yes! In fact, According to the University of Chicago School of Medicine, “Many urgent care clinics also have advanced diagnostic imaging like X-ray machines and lab capabilities to assess your illness or injury onsite. Urgent care providers can prescribe medications and recommend a higher level of care, if needed.”

What Can Be Treated By A Primary Care Doctor?

Sometimes, you should see your primary care doctor instead of an urgent care clinic. Go to a primary care doctor for the following situations:

Help with chronic health conditions

Referrals to specialists

Cold, cough, or flu

Skin problems

Arthritis

Substance abuse

Generally, your primary care doctor will coordinate all your health care needs.


When Should You Go to the Emergency Room?

Some situations are too severe for either an urgent care clinic or a primary care doctor. Go to the emergency room if you’re dealing with things like:

Shortness of breath

Chest pain

Severe cut or broken bone

Head or eye injury

Sudden and severe headache

Symptoms of a stroke or heart attack

Severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis)

Severe and persistent vomiting or diarrhea

A condition you may need to be hospitalized for

Confusion, altered mental state, suicidal thoughts

  • Book on our free mobile app or website.

    Our doctors operate in all 50 states and same day appointments are available every 15 minutes.

  • See a doctor, get treatment and a prescription at your local pharmacy.

  • Use your health insurance just like you normally would to see your doctor.

PlushCare-App-Steps

Urgent Care Online

Did you know that you can get many urgent care services online? With PlushCare you can get treatment options and electronic prescriptions for many issues that would be handled at urgent care.

Using PlushCare is easy. Make an appointment any time by clicking here or calling (888) 204-5706.

If the doctor thinks you would benefit from a medication, they can electronically send a prescription to your pharmacy.

PlushCare makes it simple to get primary and urgent care online. Just click here to book today!


Read More About Urgent Care VS Doctor


Sources

scripps.org. Should You Go to the Emergency Room or Urgent Care? Accessed on December 28, 2020 at https://www.scripps.org/news_items/4231-should-you-go-to-the-emergency-room-or-urgent-care

mountsinai.org. What is Urgent Care and When Should You Use It? Accessed on December 28, 2020 at https://www.mountsinai.org/locations/urgent-care/what-is-urgent-care

uchicagomedicine.org. When to go to the emergency room vs an urgent care clinic. Accessed on December 28, 2020 at https://www.uchicagomedicine.org/forefront/health-and-wellness-articles/when-to-go-to-the-emergency-room-vs-an-urgent-care-clinic

Most PlushCare articles are reviewed by M.D.s, Ph.Ds, N.P.s, nutritionists and other healthcare professionals. Click here to learn more and meet some of the professionals behind our blog. The PlushCare blog, or any linked materials are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice, nor is the information a substitute for professional medical expertise or treatment. For more information click here.

Our commitment to you.

PlushCare is dedicated to providing you with accurate and trustworthy health information.

  • right Tick Image

    Research from sources you can trust

  • right Tick Image

    Medical reviews by field experts

  • right Tick Image

    Frequent content updates

More to learn.

Can You Get a Zyloprim Prescription Online?

Can You Get a Zyloprim Prescription Online?

Can You Get a Zyloprim Prescription Online Zyloprim is the brand name given to the drug allopurinol. It is commonly…

Leah McCabe 7 minutes
Cigna Virtual Care

Cigna Virtual Care

Cigna Virtual Care – How Telemedicine Helps You Telemedicine is remote medicine – using modern technology and solutions to transform…

Dr. Heidi Lightfoot 4 minutes
Annual Physical Exam

Annual Physical Exam

What Is An Annual Physical Exam? An annual exam is something doctors perform every year to make sure you are…

Tessa Chatham Registered Nurse 7 minutes