With the Omicron variant now the most common form of COVID-19 in the United States—and with the best way to reduce risk being fully vaccinated and boosted against the virus, as JUCM News has reported—urgent care centers can expect to see more patients seeking that third shot (if they’re not turning up already). That’s only one reason you’re likely to see volumes rise, however, as the Omicron virus has many symptomatic and nonsymptomatic people panicking that they could have been infected by close contacts. The New York Post just ran a story detailing the great lengths—and waits—many are willing to go to in order to get tested all of a sudden. And emergency rooms, already short-staffed, are turning patients away in growing numbers because they’re packed with patients sick or concerned they could be sick with Omicron. So, patients with more typical emergencies like gastro complaints and orthopedic injuries are going to have to seek care elsewhere. Fortunately, such visits are right in line with urgent care’s capabilities. Many patients might not know it, however, so this is an opportune time to get the word out via social media, signage, and press releases to local media. Remind your community exactly what you’re capable of—for their benefit as well as your own. (And, as always, do what you can to ensure you’re fully stocked with vaccines and COVID-19 testing supplies.)

Sick or Not, More Patients Are Heading for Urgent Care. Are You Ready?