Urgent Care vs. Emergency Department

Patient smiling at Urgent Care

Where you go for care matters. Choose the right level of care, based on your injury or condition. By choosing the most appropriate care level, you will receive the medical attention you need and avoid higher costs of more complex care.

Urgent Care Services Available

Urgent Care is available at three locations within our Skagit Regional Health system, seven days a week, 364 days a year, without an appointment. Urgent Care should be used for non-life-threatening medical conditions, including:

  • Illnesses, such as cold or flu symptoms
  • Earaches, sore throat or fever
  • Fractures, sprains or strains
  • Minor burns or cuts
  • Stings or bites
  • After hours work-related illnesses or injuries

When to Call or Text 9-1-1 or Go to a Hospital Emergency Department

For life-threatening medical emergencies, call or text 9-1-1 immediately or go to the Emergency Room of your local hospital. Emergency rooms are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. Such emergencies may include:

  • Signs of a heart attack, including severe chest pain or shortness of breath
  • Signs of a stroke, including numbness or weakness on one side of the body or slurred speech
  • Severe head injuries
  • Severe abdominal pain
  • Coughing or vomiting blood
  • Serious burns
  • Deep cuts or bleeding that won't stop
  • Sudden blurred vision
  • Sudden dizziness, weakness or loss of coordination or balance
  • Sudden slurred speech or difficulty understanding
  • Seizures
  • High fever
  • Poisoning
  • Pregnancy-related health problems or childbirth
  • Uncontrolled bleeding
  • Any other life-threatening injuries