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Urgent Care services in Seattle, WA

Urgent Care 101 for Seattle, WA

Healthcare stats, facts & trends in the Emerald City

  • Types of Walk-In Clinics in Seattle

    Walk-in clinics fill an important role in the healthcare industry. They help people find care in the space between primary care and emergency care. Emergency rooms are frequently overcrowded, causing a drain on money and resources. For some people, especially those without insurance, emergency rooms are their only source of medical care, leaving hospitals pressed to care for those in real emergency situations.

    Because urgent care clinics exist to provide immediate care for non-emergency medical conditions, they operate completely or mostly by walk-in appointment. Patients don’t schedule in advance; they just show up when the clinic is open and are seen as soon as there is availability. Urgent care facilities play a key role in conserving hospital resources by providing alternative care.

    There are several types of walk-in clinics in Seattle. Knowing all your options is wise when you’re deciding what kind of clinic is the best one for you.

    Seattle has a wide range of urgent care services available.

    • Urgent Care Clinics - Urgent care clinics serve to provide immediate treatment for non-emergent medical conditions. They might be staffed by a single doctor or a team of nurses, and offer a variety of services depending on their resources.
    • Retail Clinics - Retail clinics are a part of a retail store, such as a grocery or a pharmacy chain. They offer limited options for walk-in care, like immunization, flu swabs, and some medications.
    • Primary Care Medical Facilities - Primary care medical facilities usually require a scheduled appointment, but some will offer extended hours on certain days to accommodate walk-in appointments.
    • Community or Charity Clinics - Seattle also has options for community or charity clinics. These offer certain medical treatments for free or at discounted rates.
  • How to Select the Right Clinic

    You should consider a number of factors before choosing where to go to seek medical treatment. Urgent care facilities only serve moderate medical conditions, and not every facility has the resources to treat everything in that category. Some clinics, for example, provide X-ray services, while others might not have access to the equipment or an X-ray technician. Most urgent care facilities outline the services they offer on their websites.

    Illnesses and injuries that are appropriate for treatment at an urgent care clinic are conditions like sprains, animal bites, minor burns, the flu, coughs and congestion, and allergic reactions. Some urgent care facilities offer specialty tests like STD testing, blood work, and physicals. It varies entirely from clinic to clinic.

    If you arrive at an urgent care clinic and ask to be treated for an emergency condition, the team there will simply send you to a hospital. They do not have the resources for emergency treatment. However, if necessary, they can refer you to a specialist. Of course, if you actually are in need of emergency services, don’t hesitate to go to a hospital.

    But if you think urgent care is a good choice for you, you should stop to consider a few things first. These questions will help you decide which of your local options best fits your situation.

    Before making a choice, ask yourself these questions:

    • Which urgent care clinic is closest to me?
    • Does it accept my health insurance plan? If not, does it offer discounts or payment plans?
    • What kind of medical staff works there? Are there doctors, nurses, lab techs, etc.?
    • What services can I get there?
    • What hours is it open?
    • Do I need to call ahead for any reason?
    • What do review sites say about the facility?

    Think about all these questions in regard to your medical situation to help you decide where to seek care.

  • Highest Rated Urgent Care Centers in Seattle

    Online reviews can help you choose a good local restaurant, but you might be surprised to hear that they can also help you choose an urgent care clinic. These 10 Seattle urgent care facilities are the highest-rated:

  • Hours of Urgent Care in Seattle

    Urgent care facilities in Seattle have different operating hours. Hours of operation depend largely on the individual facility and the resources it has available. Some clinics may be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Others may simply have extended hours into the evening or some weekend hours. If you aren’t sure whether a clinic is open, just double-check its website before going.

    Immediate Clinic Kirkland, for example, is open every day, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. The exception is Wednesday, when it is open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Tuesdays, when it is closed. Meanwhile, MultiCare Indigo Urgent Center Rainier is open every day, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., and on Tuesdays, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

  • Urgent Care Services and Costs

    It’s not only the operating hours that vary from facility to facility. You can also expect some level of difference in the costs and services that each urgent care facility offers. However, you will probably be able to anticipate some of the basic services that an urgent care center provides.

    Urgent care clinics treat illnesses and injuries that are serious, but not immediately life-threatening. These include conditions such as minor cuts and burns, broken bones, the flu, bronchitis, pink eye, allergic reactions, sprains, and ear infections.

    Depending on the specialists they employ and the equipment they have access to, some urgent care centers may provide other services. Not every clinic provides X-ray services, but it’s not uncommon to find ones that do. If you’re not sure what services a particular urgent care facility offers, you may be able to find a list on the clinic’s website. It may even have an itemized services list with individual pricing.

    MultiCare Indigo Urgent Care Rainier offers services from flu shots to blood work, abscess removal, breathing treatments, and minor burn, break, and laceration care. Immediate Clinic Crown Hill offers similar treatments on top of ECGs, monospot tests, and wound treatment.

    Costs also largely depend on the urgent care clinic. Many facilities accept most major insurance plans. Meanwhile, some only accept a limited range of plans. Certain clinics offer opportunities for uninsured patients like discounts and payment plans. Regardless, you can expect to pay less at an urgent care center than you would in the emergency room — and possibly at a general practitioner’s office as well. Urgent care clinics are partially intended to provide affordable care. The bill might run into the hundreds, but it won’t go into the triple digits like at hospitals.

    Many urgent care clinics offer an “a la carte” style pricing that is listed on their website. You can log on and see exactly how much you’ll be expected to pay, with or without insurance. For example, Multicare Indigo Urgent Care charges a flat rate of $175 per visit. This covers the cost of everything — your appointment as well as any necessary tests, X-rays, or prescription medication. The Immediate Care facilities like the one in Bellevue charge a baseline price of $175. However, depending on the service, patients may spend as little as $19 for care.

    Many of these urgent care facilities also offer the opportunity to book online. This can be incredibly helpful to patients. Not only does it ensure that you will arrive at a clinic that is open, but it also means you will not have to wait to see a doctor.

  • Healthcare for Travelers in Seattle

    Seattle has plenty of tourists come through every year, drawn to the attractions of the Pacific Northwest. Whether they are visiting to climb the Space Needle, go whale-watching on the Puget Sound, or visit the thriving downtown, those tourists need medical care just as much as residents do.

    Thankfully, Seattle offers a wide range of options for them. The city is also home to hundreds of hotels. Many of these are within driving or even walking distance from the best urgent care centers in the city. For example, the Kimpton Hotel Monaco is within four miles of a MultiCare Indigo Urgent Care.

    Additionally, many urgent care clinics are available in the downtown Seattle area. In this more concentrated neighborhood, there are numerous hotels. What is more, there are many options for transportation in Seattle, including taxis, Uber, Lyft, the Link Light Rail, and King County Metro Transit. Of course, there are also the famous Seattle streetcars and the Seattle Center Monorail. All of these are great options when you are looking for urgent care in Seattle.

  • Healthcare for Residents in Seattle

    Seattle is the most heavily populated city in the Pacific Northwest. People are still drawn to the unique culture of the Washington city, including the art and ocean culture. What’s more, Seattle is growing exponentially by the year. That means that its healthcare facilities need to service the needs of hundreds of thousands of people.

    There are many top-quality urgent care clinics available to residents in Seattle. Some urgent care facilities in Seattle offer specialized treatment like pediatric care or referrals to specialists like obstetricians. But urgent care isn’t the only choice for medical treatment. There are many other medical facilities in the city, including charity clinics, university clinics, and highly rated hospitals.

    For university students in Seattle, there is the Seattle University student health center. This offers basic medical care as well as referrals to specialty doctors if there is a need. Students can get health examinations, physicals, and some vaccines at a low cost.

    Seattle also has many charity or community clinics. These are places where people can access free or low-cost healthcare. They often serve low-income communities or persons who do not have health insurance.

    Open Door Health Clinic is one option for free medical care in Seattle. As a non-profit, it offers primary care, mental health counseling, diabetes management, hypertension care, and more at absolutely no cost to patients.

  • Hospitals in Seattle

    When it comes to hospitals in Seattle, there is no shortage of options. Some medical centers treat a range of conditions, while others have highly specialized fields of study.

    Virginia Mason Hospital is one of the top hospitals in the city. It treats thousands of patients every year with some of the best medical care in the Pacific Northwest. From oncology to family medicine, Virginia Mason employs expert medical professionals in dozens of specialties.

    Harborview Medical Center is another top hospital in Seattle. It offers care in highly specialized areas like AIDS care, limb loss treatment, and epilepsy management, making it one of the best hospitals in the Pacific Northwest.

    Medical services in Seattle lead the Pacific Northwest in quality. In the Emerald City, you have endless options for healthcare.

  • Neighborhoods in Seattle

    • Admiral
    • Alki
    • Ballard
    • Beacon Hill
    • Belltown
    • Blue Ridge/North Beach
    • Broadmoor
    • Broadview
    • Bryant
    • Capitol Hill
    • Central District
    • Columbia City
    • Crown Hill
    • Denny-Blaine
    • Downtown
    • Eastlake
    • Fauntleroy
    • First Hill
    • Fremont
    • Georgetown
    • Green Lake
    • Greenwood
    • Haller Lake
    • Hawthorne Hills
    • International District
    • Junction
    • Lake City
    • Laurelhurst
    • Leschi
    • Loyal Heights
    • Madison Park
    • Madison Valley
    • Madrona
    • Magnolia
    • Maple Leaf
    • Matthews Beach
    • Montlake
    • Mount Baker
    • Northgate
    • Phinney Ridge
    • Pioneer Square
    • Queen Anne
    • Rainier Beach
    • Ravenna
    • Roosevelt
    • Seward Park
    • South Lake Union
    • U-District
    • View Ridge
    • Wallingford
    • Wedgwood
    • West Seattle
    • Westlake
    • Whittier Heights
    • Windermere
  • Zip Codes in Seattle

  • Surrounding Cities

Urgent Care FAQs

  • What is urgent care?

    Urgent care are available to assist patients that are looking for immediate, convenient medical care. In that manner, they are similar to an emergency room. The difference, however, is that ERs are meant to treat major, life-threatening injuries and illnesses while urgent care centers manage life’s minor bruises and bumps. In simple terms, an urgent care is seen as a walk-in health center that focuses in offering non-emergent health care conditions, including the treatment of the typical illnesses and injuries such as fractures and sprains, cuts and burns, scrapes, stings and bites, flu and cold symptoms, nausea and vomiting, abdominal pain, and much more. Most urgent care facilities offer both diagnostic and preventive care such as well visits, immunizations, STD testing and annual physicals. For regular visits and check-ups on these clinics, you should expect to pay between $20 and $100. The good thing is that most urgent care clinics will accept major PPOs and insurance cover, Medicare, as well as self-pay in the form of credit cards or cash. Urgent care clinics are located in most parts of the country in various regions to offset emergency room visits and provide a gap in healthcare services. They take patients during all hours of operations, which offer a significant convenience to most people who have and continue to undergo the need for sudden and immediate medical attention.

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  • When should I go to the urgent care vs emergency room (ER)?

    Urgent care facilities are seen as a combination between an emergency room (ER) and a PCP (Primary Care Physicians), serving the instant and after hours requirements of neighboring patients. Most urgent care clinics even say that they can diagnose and treat up to seventy-five percent of the patients who visit an emergency room. The primary difference between an ER and Urgent care is the experience of the patient. The average waiting time in an ER is almost 2.5 hours while waiting time in urgent care is between 15 and 45 minutes. The cost of urgent care is usually a fraction of what you would pay in an emergency room. It is advisable to visit an emergency room in situations of medical emergency because urgent care clinics are meant for minor and non-emergent illnesses and injuries.

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  • What's the difference between an urgent care and walk-in clinic?

    You will often see the terms urgent care clinic, retail clinic, immediate care clinic, walk-in clinic, and convenient clinic being interchangeably used nowadays. The emergence of emergency rooms complicated the conversation. A walk-in clinic is a type of clinic in which patients can walk-in with no advance appointment. An urgent care clinic, on the other hand, denotes a subgroup of the walk-in clinic model that typically provides extended hours, extended services and abilities as well as on-site lab tests and x-rays.

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  • How much does an urgent care cost?

    The price charged in urgent care will be based on the location, and there are no actual standard costs between the clinics. Assuming you are paying with cash, you might come across an urgent clinic that charges you $50 while another situated some mile away charges you $100 for the same services. The standard cost in urgent care where insurance cover is not involved ranges from $100 to $125. This price is generally the standard price of a visit before extra services. There are a couple of additional care services that could make your appointment to an urgent care costly including x-rays and lab tests, medications and injections (such as immunization), casting broken bones, as well as stitches and splints. If you have a viable insurance plan in place, the standard pay will be between $20 – 50 depending on your insurance coverage and whether you are in contact with the provider.

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  • Is insurance accepted at urgent care centers?

    All insurance providers indicate whether their plan covers urgent care facilities or not. Individual clinics and providers may or may not possess a relationship with a particular plan. This aspect makes the scenario complicated. In most situations, insurance providers will cover the urgent care centers, and patients will be needed to pay a co-payment every time they visit the facility. In other rare occasions, it is common for the urgent care facilities to reject some insurance plans even if the provider has indicated that they will pay for the costs incurred. With these uncertainties, it is always advisable to call urgent care centers in advance to determine whether they accept specific insurance plans or not.

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Urgent Care Guide

In a recent survey conducted with the Urgent Care Association, Solv found that patients were waiting an average of 24 days for appointments with their primary care provider. In a world of instant gratification, consumers demand more. They demand now. If you want to watch a movie, you download it in minutes or stream it instantly. If you need groceries, you can pick up your phone and have them delivered to you within the hour. If you need restaurant reservations, you find one with availability, book online, walk in minutes later and sit right down. Healthcare shouldn’t be any different.

That’s why urgent care has been growing at a faster pace than any other healthcare service in the United States. And it is why healthcare consumers search for “urgent care” more than 5x more than “primary care” or “family doctor,” combined. These consumers are highly actionable, searching with high intent terms like “urgent care near me.” They want same day access to quality healthcare providers when they are sick or injured - after hours, one weekends and on holidays - without the cost and inconvenience of the emergency room.

Urgent care centers typically treat minor illnesses like the flu, sinus infections and strep throat, as well as injuries like bone fractures and sprains, cuts, scrapes and burns, making these clinics ideal for diagnosing and treating non-emergent healthcare needs. And at a growing rate urgent care clinics are offering preventative care services including annual physicals and well visits, flu shots and other immunizations and vaccines, taking on the role of primary care provider for the tens of millions of consumers that don’t have one.

For kids there are special pediatric urgent care centers, usually open after hours for patients between the ages of 1 and 18.

Services & Pricing

Urgent care centers, which are part of the walk-in clinic healthcare category, are a convenient resource for consumers needing treatment for minor illnesses and injuries. Services that you would normally receive at your primary care office are usually available at an urgent care including annual and school physicals, flu shots and immunizations, treatment for illnesses including colds, flu stomach pains, sinus and ear infections and more. You can also be seen for injuries such as burns, bites, sprains and breaks - things that you might first thing to go to the emergency room vs urgent care, but you’ll have a shorter wait and smaller bill at the urgent care. As for cost, without insurance, you should expect between $100-140 for your visit, plus the cost of any labs, tests or images. With insurance, urgent care will be similar to seeing a specialist with applicable co-pay.

Insurance & Payments

Nearly all urgent care centers take commercial insurance and many (if not most) will take medicare. As such if you have insurance coverage, you can expect the financial experience to be similar to visiting a specialist where you have a co-pay, usually $35-50, due at the time of the visit. Any additional lab work, x-rays or other tests performed will be billed against your insurance first and any supplemental balance due will be invoiced to you after the fact. Without insurance, you’ll pay a visit fee between $100-140 at the time of your visit. This is typically 25-50% more than your primary care provider, but usually the convenience is well worth the additional cost. If you are interested in a telehealth or video visit, your cost could be as much as 50% less than an urgent care, you could be diagnosed and prescribed medication and you’ll never have to leave your home.

Hours & Wait Times

Every urgent care center - even those part of the same group or brand - may have different hours. While they are meant to be conveniently accessible during times when your primary care provider is not, that’s subjective and highly variable. A traditional formula, however, is that an urgent care is open 6 to 7 days a week usually between the hours of 8 am to 8 pm. That could shift to nearly any 8-12 hour period between 7 am and 10 pm. You’ll even find some clinics open 24 hours a day, similar to an emergency room. As for wait time, most patients report waiting between 15-45 minutes on average, but that can certainly vary, as well. It’s usually best to find an urgent care near you to either confirm the hours online, or call the clinic directly to verify. Or, you can book a same day doctor appointment online with Solv.

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