Urgent Care Is More Cost-effective Than You Think

September 11, 2023 by Dr. Eric Ellis

Health concerns – major, minor and everything in between – can arise anytime.

When faced with non-life-threatening injuries or illnesses, people often find themselves debating whether to head to their primary care physician’s office or rush to the emergency room.

Urgent care centers, however, provide an effective and affordable option. Contrary to popular belief, urgent care centers offer more affordable solutions with a variety of insurance options and considerable savings compared to primary care and emergency room visits.

Insurance Options and Cost Transparency

A wide range of insurance options helps make urgent care centers affordable options for patients.

Most urgent care facilities accept various forms of insurance, including private health insurance and Medicare. This means that regardless of insurance provider, patients can receive urgent care attention without incurring exorbitant out-of-pocket expenses. Treatment options also exist for those without insurance.

Many urgent care centers prioritize cost transparency, so patients can anticipate estimated costs and make informed decisions about their health care. This practice reduces the likelihood of unexpected medical bills, a common concern among people seeking medical attention.

Comparing Costs: Urgent Care, Primary Care, and the Emergency Room

Urgent care centers consistently offer cost-effective solutions compared to both primary care and emergency room visits, which has likely aided in their recent growth.

Urgent care centers are designed to handle non-life-threatening injuries and illnesses promptly. A visit typically costs $100 to $150, depending on the location and services provided. Moreover, walk-in appointments allow for convenience and avoid the hassle of scheduling in advance.

Although primary care physicians are essential for managing long-term health and wellness, booking an appointment may require waiting several days or weeks. Copays for primary care visits typically range from $20 to $50, but this cost can increase if additional tests or procedures are required.

Emergency rooms are equipped to handle severe medical emergencies but come with a hefty price tag. ER visits can cost anywhere from $500 to well over $1,000, depending on the situation’s complexity and whether or not the patient has insurance.

Urgent Care Savings and Convenience

Beyond the initial cost comparison, urgent care centers offer additional savings and conveniences that should not be overlooked. These include:

Time Savings:
Urgent care centers are designed to provide swift medical attention. With shorter waiting times than emergency rooms and primary care offices, you can get in, get treated, and get back to your daily routine more quickly.

Preventive Care Services:
Many urgent care centers offer preventive services such as vaccinations, flu shots, and basic health screenings. These services contribute to overall wellness and can help you avoid more serious health issues down the line.

Flexible Hours:
Urgent care centers often have extended hours, including evenings and weekends. This flexibility is particularly valuable for individuals with busy schedules who can’t afford to miss work or school.

Urgent care centers stand as a prime example of how modern healthcare is evolving to meet the demands of patients seeking quality care without the burden of sky-high costs. The next time you need medical attention, remember that urgent care centers provide accessible and cost-effective solutions.

How We Can Help

Visit Lincoln Urgent Care or Granite Bay Urgent Care for testing, diagnosing, and treatment options.

You can also book a telemedicine appointment or call either urgent care clinic for more details. We look forward to hearing from you!

Lincoln Urgent Care (916) 258-2751
Granite Bay Urgent Care (916) 570-7265


Lincoln Urgent Care and Granite Bay Urgent Care are full-service urgent care centers with onsite x-ray and laboratory testing. Our team is dedicated to providing patients with affordable and timely care for their urgent care needs.

Lincoln Urgent Care
77 Lincoln Boulevard Suite 1
Lincoln, CA 95648
Phone: (916) 258-2751
Fax: (916) 258-7172

Granite Bay Urgent Care
5290 Douglas Blvd
Suite 102
Granite Bay, CA 95746
Phone: (916) 570-7265
Fax: (916) 200-2412

As your trusted urgent care clinic, we would like to notify our patients about the Open Payments database put in place by the Medical Board of California as of January 1, 2024.

The federal Physician Payments Sunshine Act requires that detailed information about payment and other payments of value worth over ten dollars ($10) from manufacturers of drugs, medical devices, and biologics to physicians and teaching hospitals be made available to the public.

The Open Payments database is a national transparency program that collects and publishes information about financial relationships between drug and medical device companies and certain healthcare providers.

For informational purposes, please visit: openpaymentsdata.cms.gov