Urgency or Emergency? Which Type of Treatment Do you Need?

Urgency or Emergency? Which Type of Treatment Do you Need?

When there’s a problem that needs medical attention, who do you call? Where do you go? Well, that depends on the nature of the injury or ailment.

One of the biggest medical misconceptions is that hospitals should be your immediate ‘go-to’ for everything from allergic reactions to open wounds.

While a hospital’s emergency department is more than capable of dealing with pretty much anything and everything – the fact is their focus is on saving lives.

If your condition is serious, but not life threatening, your first port of call should be an urgent care centre – like ours, here in Grand Cayman. Best of all, you can just walk-in, with no appointments needed, any time during our extended hours from 9AM – 9PM, 7 days a week.

Below are further considerations of when to opt for urgent or emergency care.

Urgent Care

Life is full of cuts, bruises and all types of illnesses. Many people think of visiting primary care providers for minor illnesses – like strep throat or earaches – and the emergency room for more serious injuries like sprains, burns and broken bones. However, all of these conditions are classified as urgent care.


Because they need to be treated ASAP—and an urgent care doctor has the skills to provide treatment before a condition worsens.

They’re not life-or-death situations – which is why they don’t fall into the emergency category. That doesn’t make the injury or illness any less important, though.

Urgent care professionals are board-certified and highly-skilled. They can treat what you might otherwise head to an ER for – like cuts that need stiches, bad burns, fever and flu. In fact, Doctors Express is staffed by both emergency medicine specialists and general practitioners so they are qualified to handle all of your medical needs.

Emergency Care

There are obvious tell-tale signs that you need emergency care: seizures, chest pains shortness of breath, dizziness and disorientation, severe head injuries, protruding bones or coughing blood.

All of these symptoms indicate a more serious underlying problem or condition that could be life-threatening. If any of these symptoms materialize, emergency care is needed – and you should head straight to the emergency room..

Given the nature of emergency care, it is the most expensive type of medical care. So, heading to an urgent care will almost always be a more affordable—and convenient—healthcare option for you and your family.

Combined with the potential longer wait times, if your condition isn’t life threatening but needs immediate attention, then a visit to an urgent care facility is right for you.

Ultimately, urgent care relieves the burden from emergency rooms so that ER professionals can focus on what they do best – saving lives.

View our FAQs for more information on when you should visit an urgent care centre.

In addition to urgent medical issues, Doctors Express can be your family’s primary doctor with our full in-house lab, X-ray and on-site pharmacy. With our close working relationship with local hospitals and specialists, we can provide referrals for any additional care or consultations you may require. We centralise your family’s care by coordinating with specialists and providing secure, convenient access to all of your healthcare records through our secure online patient portal.

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