Urgent Care vs Emergency Room: Where Should You Go?

black and white hospital bed in the middle of interior building

 With the different types of medical facilities available today, it could get confusing because you don’t know where to go to when you’re sick or injured. Urgent care and emergency care facilities are the ones that are readily available at any time of the day, but how do you know which one to go to? 

First, knowing the difference between the two will help you make the right decision when you need to go to a healthcare facility. With this knowledge, you can save yourself the trouble of going to the wrong facility and possibly spending a tremendous amount of money!

Urgent Care

Consider urgent care as your regular doctor’s visit but is open usually anytime. It’s the place to go when your child has a high fever but shows no other symptoms, or when you fall and sustain a wound that needs stitches. 

An urgent care facility fills in the place of your regular doctor and can provide treatments for injuries and even deliver acute medical care. It’s the best facility to remedy a cold, flu, sprained ankle, and other conditions that are not life-threatening but require immediate attention. 

Furthermore, it’s cheaper compared to an emergency facility, though the wait time is a bit longer. The time typically depends on the facility, the time of day, and the season. If it’s a cold season, you can expect the facility to be packed with patients, which means you will have a longer waiting time. The advantage of this is you will get medical attention right away without waiting for your next doctor’s appointment. 

Urgent care facilities are helpful, especially for children. Instead of risking your child’s health and even yours by going to the emergency room, you get to see the doctor or medical professional right away. 

Emergency Room

Emergency rooms are for emergency cases, typically meaning life-threatening conditions, such as accidents and other medical conditions that need emergency care. The point with these facilities is that they are located in a hospital, and they have everything you need. 

When you consider urgent care facilities, you will find that many are stand-alone, which means that they don’t have all the facilities and equipment you might need. Despite the higher costs of an emergency facility, the cost doesn’t mean much if it helps to save lives. 

When choosing whether to go to urgent care or an emergency facility, you should always assess the situation first. Do you need emergency treatment, or will urgent care suffice? If it’s not life-threatening, you can go directly to an urgent care facility. You can also consult with your doctor about the best center to go to. 


When it comes to choosing between urgent care and an emergency facility, it could get confusing. Nevertheless, what you should remember is to assess the situation before you head straight out the door. If it’s not life-threatening, an urgent care facility would be a better option, while serious conditions must be taken directly to an emergency facility. 

Urgent care provides acute medical care, while emergency care can treat any condition. Likewise, the latter accommodates severe conditions. 

If you’re not feeling well and you want to get immediate medical attention, you can come to us! We are a full-service, walk-in, medical facility in New Jersey providing convenient and affordable service for children, adolescents, adults, and geriatric patients. Get in touch with us today to see how we can help!

COVID- 19 Testing

PCR & Rapid Tests Available

Agile Urgent Care is pleased to provide COVID-19 testing BY APPOINTMENT ONLY during this time of great need. To schedule your test, please click the button below.

Are you getting tested on behalf of a company?