Also known as:
Emergency care, Emergency department, Emergency room, ER
If this is an emergency, call 9-1-1.
Hospital emergency rooms (ERs) are set up to focus on medical emergencies. They are not set up to focus on routine health care. If you go to the ER for a problem that is not an emergency:
- It will cost a lot more than it would at your doctor's office or a walk-in clinic. A trip to the ER for an earache, for example, may cost three to four times as much as it would at your doctor's office.
- You will probably spend a lot more time there than you would at a walk-in clinic or doctor's office.
- You will get care from a doctor who has probably never seen you before. It's always best to get as much of your care as you can from a doctor who knows and understands you.
Is it really an emergency?
Go to the ER if you think you are having a medical emergency. That's what the ER is for. Otherwise, call your doctor's office first, or go to a walk-in clinic. It will save you money and time.