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Eye on Health: When to visit MedPoint Urgent Care or head straight to the Emergency Room

It’s important to understand when it is appropriate to visit urgent care or head straight for the emergency room before you’re sick or injured and need medical assistance. Just ask Stefanie Scott.

The Mishawaka mom and pediatric home nurse has visited both MedPoint and the emergency rooms at Beacon Granger Hospital and Memorial Hospital. She recently sought treatment at urgent care for muscle spasms in her back. But a few weeks ago, Scott knew it would be better to go to the emergency room.

“My pain was in my shoulder and it was radiating down to my heart,” Scott recalls. “So I knew I better come into the emergency room because if it was heart related, you want to have the equipment and everything the hospital has available if they want to admit you.”

In this month’s WSBT Eye on Health, Dr. Dennis Erdman, medical director, MedPoint Urgent Care, and Dr. Erin Clark, medical director of the Memorial Hospital ER, offer examples of when you should visit urgent care or the emergency room.

If you have a twisted ankle, sore throat, minor laceration or you need to get tested for strep throat, Dr. Erdman said that’s when to seek treatment at MedPoint. Beacon operates urgent care centers in Granger, South Bend, Elkhart, Goshen and Three Rivers.

But for uncontrolled pain, chest pain, abdominal pain or symptoms of stroke, it is recommended you visit the ER. Beacon emergency rooms are located at Memorial Hospital of South Bend, Elkhart General Hospital, Beacon Granger Hospital, Community Hospital of Bremen, Three Rivers Health and Franciscan Beacon Hospital.

“You should never feel embarrassed or worried about coming to the emergency department,” Dr. Clark said. “That’s our job: to check people out and make sure they don’t have something big, bad or scary going on.”

Learn more about MedPoint Urgent Care, where you can use Save My Spot or walk in: https://www.beaconhealthsystem.org/urgent-care/

Learn more about our six area Beacon Health System emergency rooms: https://www.beaconhealthsystem.org/emergency-and-trauma-care/