When Should I Worry About...

ER vs. Urgent Care: Know When to Go

Nov. 27, 2019

Some health issues are obviously severe or life-threatening, and there’s no second guessing that they require immediate medical attention at an emergency room. Then, there are those confusing symptoms that can feel unusually strange or painful — leaving you wondering whether an emergency room is necessary or not.

It’s important to know where to go to get the care you need before you’re sick or experiencing an emergency.

Here's which health issues or symptoms warrant a trip to the ER and which can be treated at an urgent care center.

Infographic depicting when to visit an ER and when to visit urgent care

How to find emergency care near you

Whether it's treating minor emergencies or life-threatening ones, Houston Methodist Emergency Care Centers and Houston Methodist Emergency Departments are open 24/7, year-round to provide the full spectrum of medical services to all patients who need emergency assistance.

At our emergency care locations, we offer:

  • Board-certified emergency physicians and nurses
  • On-site laboratory
  • Full-service X-ray, CT and ultrasound
  • Private treatment rooms

What to do if you need urgent care for a minor health issue

If your minor symptoms are particularly uncomfortable and you need urgent care, you can visit a Same Day Clinic or use Virtual Urgent Care. This won't be an appointment with your usual doctor, but it's a way to get quick, quality care from a medical provider.

Categories: When Should I Worry About...