DENVER (CBS4) – If you have pink eye… where should you go? Your own doctor, urgent care or the emergency room?
A series of 60 billboards now featured around town encourages people to think about the answer before they have an emergency.
Whether it’s a snakebite or another ailment, where you go for healthcare matters.
That’s the message behind the billboard campaign presented by the Colorado Hospital Association, says Cara Welch.
“To help consumers think about where to seek care before they need it,” she says.
CHA represents almost all of the hospitals in the state.
Welch says research shows seven out of 10 emergency room visits could have been handled at an urgent care clinic or your doctor’s office.
“That would be something like a common cold, ankle sprain or minor cut on your finger,” says Welch. “Those are the ones we want to drive people to urgent care.”
A snakebite; that is when you do go to the ER.
With rising healthcare costs, it’s also important to know how much you’ll be paying for the same service.
For example, CHA says the average cost of an ear infection runs $90 at your doctor’s office. It $100 dollars at urgent care. But if you go to the ER it jumps up to $1,100 dollars.
Welch says in this public awareness campaign, CHA has developed a family care plan for consumers to read.
“That is similar to what kids bring home to learn about fire safety. Their family sits down and talks about what to do in case of a fire,” she says. “We want families to have that same discussion with their health care.”
LINK: Where For Care?