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Efficiency and accessibility have always been two key attributes that set urgent care apart from traditional primary care. With primary care providers in short supply these days, however, some healthcare consumers are finding urgent care centers to be essential to meeting their needs. Action News Now reported the story of one such family in Redding, CA, who found it next-to impossible to find a new PCP for their 80-year-old matriarch who had recently relocated to the area—unless she was willing to wait months for her first appointment, a prospect that they find intolerable. So, her son has been taking her to the closest urgent care center when the need arises. “It’s a frustrating situation to be in, particularly for the elderly,” he told the reporter. On the other side of the country, a hospital in Wells, ME has been forced to temporarily suspend emergency-level visits because they simply don’t have enough staff to provide the quality and quantity of care necessary to welcome patients in. The hospital’s affiliated urgent care center continues to see patients, however.

Urgent Care Becomes Even More Appealing as Short-Staffed Primary Care Offices Take Weeks for Appointments