Regardless of the setting in which they practice, urgent care clinicians play a crucial role in emergency medicine, according to the American Academy of Family Physicians—so much so that AAFP officially renamed one of its subgroups the Member Interest Group Emergency Medicine/Urgent Care (MIG EM/UC). In a new review article published in the current issue of Annals of Family Medicine, Banks, et al note that a “persistent shortages of residency-trained emergency physicians” creates a need for other practice environments equipped and staffed to provide immediate care for patients in need, and that urgent care is well positioned to fill that void. At the same time, the fact that urgent care is family medicine-based, in the eyes of the authors, means it is also an invaluable resource for patients whose complaints are not ultimately “emergent” but that require immediate care nonetheless. Overall, they conclude, “there is an urgency to identify staffing models that are dynamic and collaborative, and recognize the importance of family medicine.”

AAFP Highlights Urgent Care’s Role in ‘Emergency’ Medicine