Medical Minute: Urgent Care patient increase

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MINOT, N.D. - Urgent care clinics reduce unnecessary ER visits.

Sanford Health offers a walk-in service to patients in the Minot area.

You may not be feeling your best, but walking into Sanford Health's walk-in clinic, you'll always be greeted with a smile.

"We see a lot of strep's, influenzas, ear infections. We even see the viral gastro, they come in complaining they're throwing up and they've been doing this for two days," said Susan Collins, certified nurse practitioner.

The walk-in clinic averages 125 patients a day. With a team of dedicated professionals, your medical needs are always approached hands on.

"Normally it's two providers, and two nurses, and two x-ray techs," said Collins.

But urgent care facilities are ever changing, becoming more popular for the convenience of instant care.

"When I started, I would be lucky if I saw 10 or 15 in a six-and-a half-hour period, and now I'm seeing 25 to 30 in a six-and-a-half-hour period," said Collins.

Collins asks her patients to be patient. The waiting room may be full, but the team working behind the scenes is doing the best they can to treat every ailment, fracture and injury to the best of their ability.

"We're not an emergency room. We don't see all of the bigger problems that tie the providers up. With just the little problems we can go in, see our patient, spend 15 minutes with them, diagnose them and send them out," said Collins.

So whether your sick, in pain or need something checked out, you can count on the urgency of urgent care.

If you are experiencing cardiac chest pain, have a newborn with a fever or are seeking pregnancy related medical treatment, you're advised to visit your local hospital's emergency room or primary care.