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All Posts Tagged: preventive care

The differences between urgent care, retail centers, and primary care

Many patients may confuse urgent care centers, retail clinics, and primary care offices because of their similar names/services.

However, it is important to understand that these types of medical providers have varying degrees of comprehensive care, clinical capabilities, and other ways to provide care to patients. So what are the main differences between each

Retail Clinics

Retail clinics provide walk-in services for patients are located inside of  large stores, like supermarkets and department retailers. Instead of physicians, retail clinics are staffed by nurse practitioners (NPs) or physician assistants (PAs), and are intended to be affordable and efficient.

Different location operators provide different services, but generally, retail clinics provide care for common illnesses and injuries, including a sore throat, cold and flu symptoms, allergies, minor cuts, burns, rashes and headaches. Some retail clinics may also perform immunizations, annual physicals and health screenings. The operating hours for retail clinics vary, but are generally open from 8 a.m to 8 p.m during the week. 

Primary Care

Primary care offices are staffed by family physicians and provide a variety of services intended to support continuous care. Primary care physicians establish a relationship with their patients, manage their health, provide patient education and counseling, and promote wellness improvements. 

Primary care providers, or PCPs, are responsible for offering preventative services that can keep illness at bay. A primary care office performs vaccinations, physicals, check-ups, screenings and blood work, and help with the management of diseases such as diabetes and asthma. PCPs provide specialty referrals if they identify any outstanding healthcare risks or concerns. Usually PCPs are open during regular business hours without the flexibility of urgent care centers. 

Make sure to meet a new potential PCP and evaluate if they are a good fit for you or your family.

Urgent Care

Urgent care centers are a bit more advanced in clinical capabilities when compared to retail clinics, based on the staff and equipment available at an urgent care center. Most urgent care centers have at least one board-certified doctor in-house to treat patients during business hours. 

Most urgent care centers are equipped with x-ray imaging services that help evaluate and manage injuries like broken bones,  Whereas emergency rooms typically have long wait times, the average wait time at an urgent care center is 15 minutes or less, based on the most recent statistics on urgent care use. 

Ultimately, you’ll likely need at least two of these providers in order to have ideal healthcare access. For most patients, a PCP as well as a trusted urgent care center can help deliver the best possible healthcare outcomes.

 

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family during holidays practicing kitchen safety

How to keep the Holidays Happy, Healthy, and Safe This Season!

The holiday season is here and you’re probably thinking about all the tasty treats, family times, and wintery festivities! But to keep the caroling loud and jolly, you’ll want to ensure that the necessary precautions are made to keep the whole family healthy and safe for the holidays.

The early to mid-winter months can increase your risk of coming into contact with food and airborne allergens, as well as hazardous conditions from the cold weather. So what should you be doing to keep the joyful times safe and risk-free during the holidays?

Kitchen and food safety is paramount to prevent allergies and injuries  

Everyone wants to bake their famous pie or cake and prepare their coveted Christmas dinners with all their fancy kitchen appliances. However, it is important to properly manage a kitchen during the holidays for several reasons.

Many holiday treats and desserts contain common food allergens such as nuts, dairy, and egg. To prevent an allergic reaction, make sure that all guests at a party or function are aware of any possible allergies. Have hypo-allergenic alternatives to prepared dishes as well to limit allergy risk. Simple hand washing and sanitation of cooking apparatuses.

In addition, a busy kitchen could lead to potential burn and cut injuries if the necessary safety precautions are not taken. Limit kitchen burns by wearing protective handwear like oven mitts when handling hot surfaces and dishes. Also, make sure that appliances are overseen by at least one person to reduce potential fires. Sharp cutlery should be handled carefully and stored properly to avoid cuts and lacerations.

Safely remove snow and ice to reduce injury risk

As winter rolls around, the chance of slipping and falling or experiencing frostbite increases. Safe removal of snow and ice can greatly reduce your risk of experiencing an injury.

It is important to pace yourself when removing heavy piles of snow as you could experience muscle strain or elevated physical stress. Take your time as needed to clear off snow and scrape ice as needed.

When outside, wear winter boots or another form of non-slip footwear to prevent slips and falls. Maintaining shovels and snow removal equipment also helps to maintain a safe pace when removing snow and ice.

If you experience an injury or illness during the holiday season, make sure you seek urgent care services unless it is a life-threatening emergency situation.

Just take the time to practice these safety and health tips to enjoy a merry holiday season!

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