Knowing the right place for care before you need it

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It happens more often than not.

You are either running or walking, playing a sport or working out and you sprain your ankle.

But do you know where to go?

We asked Dr. Jason Pedrick with OhioHealth where to go in different situations – so you know the right place for care.

“Everybody that comes through the front door, we will end up evaluating them," Dr. Pedrick said. "So, we will bring them back and a provider will lay eyes on them.”

For chronic diseases like COPD or diabetes, see your primary care doctor.

“We’re welcome to see and evaluate everybody here but if you get a chance with a chronic condition like that, I’d go in and see a regular doctor,” Dr. Pedrick said.

What about things like physical exams?

“You really want to be in your primary care doctor because they can go over yearly check-ups with you, different blood work that you need," Dr. Pedrick said. "They know you a lot better than just a random urgent care or E.R. would.”

But what happens if you wake up with a bad cough and you think you may have bronchitis?

“Saturday afternoon, regular doctor’s office is closed, not a life-threatening emergency, we’ll be able to take care of that," Dr. Pedrick said. "We’d be happy to see you here at Urgent Care.”

Now, what about that sprained ankle?

“Not life-threatening, ya know, you’re not having numbness and a lot of bleeding from the limb, you’re able to walk or you’re able to get pushed around, we will see you in here," Dr. Pedrick said. "We will see what’s going on. But that’s an urgent care problem.”

If it’s a more of an emergency – If you’re having difficulty breathing or shortness of breath. Urgent Cares can help you out but that’s when you need to go to the Emergency Room.

“That’s the kind of thing we would take very seriously. We’d bring back right away and get vital signs," Dr. Pedrick said. "But that’s more of an emergent condition.

Emergency Rooms are the most expensive of the three options.

“It is more of a financial investment but when your life’s on the line, you gotta get to the right spot,” Dr. Pedrick said.

Choosing the right place for care can save you from that surprising E.R. bill.