House Calls vs Urgent Care Centers: Unpacking the Critical Differences in Medical Care

Across the medical industry, we’ve seen a rise in fast-acting options for medical care. One of the biggest results of this push is the rise of urgent care centers across the country. 2018 Data from UCA noted that 70% of urgent care patients waited less than 20 minutes to see a provider, and nearly 94% were seen in less than 30 minutes. However, that perceived efficiency comes at a cost. Urgent cares (like telemedicine) rely on a little bit of self-diagnosis or self-awareness from the patient, and for the patient to adequately communicate what’s going on to a healthcare provider. Most problems addressed by urgent care centers are smaller or can be handled within a limited urgent care facility.

Another option that more people are exploring is a resurgence of house calls. If you’re someone who struggles with chronic illness or just likes the convenience of not having to sit in an urgent care waiting room even for 20 minutes, here are some signs you should consider house calls.

House call doctors keep patients comfortable

A house call provides a higher level of convenience and comfort for the patient, as they do not have to leave their home or wait in a crowded waiting room. Even with all of an urgent care center’s convenience, they still require a patient to transport themselves there. This can be especially beneficial for patients who are elderly, disabled, or have limited mobility.

House calls allow doctors to connect better with patients

House calls allow the doctor to provide more personalized and individualized care to the patient. During a house call, the doctor can spend more time with the patient and get a better understanding of their medical history, lifestyle, and overall health. This can help the doctor provide more tailored recommendations and treatments that are specific to the patient’s needs. At UPLIN, we’ve seen that care and connection with a doctor remains one of the most important factors in the overall health of a patient.

House calls can sometimes be more cost-effective

Finally, a house call can be a more cost-effective option for patients who do not have health insurance or have high deductibles. In many cases, the cost of a house call may be comparable to or even less than the cost of an urgent care visit, especially if additional tests or procedures are required. While not all house call doctors take insurance, these costs still come out as lower than what someone pays in insurance for a full year only to go to an urgent care facility.

Overall, having a medical doctor provide a house call can offer several benefits to patients, including convenience, personalized care, and cost-effectiveness.