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Urgent Care vs. The Emergency Room | Health Beat with Brea Love

Choosing urgent care over the emergency room could save you money. ABC10's health expert explains when to go to which location.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Advertisements circulating online state people can save a large percentage of money on similar services at urgent care compared to the emergency room. 

ABC10's health expert Dr. Tom Hopkins said this is accurate. If you don't have a serious medical condition, it will cost you more. Hopkins said he tells his patients they shouldn't go to the emergency room unless they feel they will need to stay in the hospital overnight. 

"If you have a cold, or cough or little knee injury, you don't need to be in the hospital. You're not gonna be put in the hospital," Hopkins said. "You're going to wait a long time because there are people who really need those services, and you have to wait until they're adequately evaluated."

Hopkins said if someone has chest pains, a significant amount of trauma or injury then the emergency room is the best bet. If it's something less severe, try getting to your doctor or heading to an urgent care facility to save money. 

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