Cost Comparison: Breaking Down the Costs of At-Home Doctors Visits vs Emergency Room Trips

There’s a growing trend in healthcare of people getting frustrated with the existing system and opting to visit an emergency room or urgent care for their medical needs instead of going to their general practitioner. While emergency rooms are there for immediate needs, more and more adults are opting to visit for “inappropriate”/non-urgent care

While the convenience has made the ER a tempting option for those who want medical attention fast, it can be costly. The cost of emergency room visits has been rising steadily over the past few decades, making it a very expensive option for patients. According to a report by the Health Care Cost Institute, the average cost of an emergency room visit in the US was $1,389 in 2019. One Atlanta woman waited seven hours, paid $700 in fees and was never actually seen by a provider! ER costs can vary significantly depending on the severity of the condition, the services provided, and the location of the hospital.

Doctor house call services, on the other hand, can provide a more cost-effective option for patients, particularly for non-emergency medical issues. The cost of a house call typically ranges from $350 – $650, depending on the location, the services provided, and the time of day. While the cost may be higher than a typical office visit, it’s still significantly less expensive than an emergency room visit. It also guarantees an MD will see you and treat you (unlike that nightmare the woman in Atlanta suffered). 

Benefits of Doctor House Calls 

The benefits of a doctor house call go beyond cost savings. Patients who use doctor house call services bypass the long waits in the emergency room and exposure to other illnesses. As we learned in 2020 during the pandemic, exposure to other illnesses can compound preexisting conditions and make current illnesses far worse. Additionally, house call doctors can provide personalized care in the comfort of the patient’s home, which can lead to better health outcomes and patient satisfaction.

It’s important to note that not all doctor house call services are created equal. While registered nurses can provide basic medical care and support, they may not have the same level of training and expertise as a medical doctor. In general, doctor house calls like the ones provided by UPLIN’s concierge service are performed by a licensed physician who has the necessary training and expertise to diagnose and treat a wide range of medical conditions.

“But what about telemedicine? Doesn’t that work?” 

While telemedicine can provide a convenient and cost-effective way to receive medical care, it may not be suitable for all medical issues. For example, a telemedicine visit may not be able to detect physical symptoms that a doctor could identify during a physical exam, such as a rash or swollen lymph nodes. Additionally, some medical conditions may require in-person tests or procedures, which cannot be performed through telemedicine.

Doctor house call services can provide a cost-effective and convenient alternative to emergency room visits for non-emergency medical issues. However, it’s important to choose a reputable service like UPLIN that employs licensed physicians and provides a comprehensive range of medical services. Patients should also be aware of the limitations of telemedicine and understand that some medical issues may require in-person care.