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Why Urgent Care Centers are Great for Combating the Flu

March 10, 2016
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Winter may be starting to wind down in many parts of the country, but flu season is still in full swing. There are many different things you can be doing to protect yourself from catching influenza, such as getting enough sleep, consuming enough vitamins and minerals, and staying away from people who are ill already.

If you do ultimately and unfortunately catch the flu or come down with flu-like symptoms, the first thing you’ll have to decide is where and when you should seek professional care. That’s where urgent care centers come into play.

Although they began in the 1970s, urgent care clinics have become incredibly popular in recent years. Today, there are more than 6,800 urgent care facilities in the U.S. that treat approximately 3 million patients each year.

Urgent care centers are convenient, affordable, and offer high-quality care for a variety of different ailments, including the flu. Dr. Katherine Hiller, MD, and director of medical student education at the University of Arizona recently wrote a blog post on the school’s website to help people determine the right time to seek emergency room care and when it’s appropriate to visit an urgent care center.

In her post, she pointed out that the flu can be a good reason to go to one of these less traditional healthcare options, as there isn’t a whole lot that can be done for the flu besides taking over-the-counter drugs like acetaminophen and ibuprofen and getting plenty of rest and fluids.

Another great advantage urgent care clinics have is their flexible availability. Maybe you just got home from work; it’s already past 6:00 PM and your child is exhibiting signs of sickness. By bringing them to an urgent care center, they can be diagnosed by a healthcare professional. After all, 65% of centers have at least one physician on-site at all times.

Also of note, most urgent care facilities offer flu shots even this late in the season that you can still benefit from and should consider. The flu may be nearly gone, but that doesn’t mean you can’t keep up the fight. Do everything you can to stay healthy. If you need urgent care, get urgent care.