Emergency & Urgent Care
Urgent Care and Emergency Room Use
Should You Go to Urgent Care or the Emergency Room?
Examples of Urgent Care Symptoms:
- Vomiting for more than 6 hours (if young child, call PCP)
- Diarrhea for more than 6 hours (if young child, call PCP)
- Minor burns and rashes
- A minor allergic reaction
- Flu, sore throat with a fever, earaches
An Urgent Care is a great place to get medical help because they usually have extended hours, specialists for common problems, and can see you quickly (usually less than an hour)! You can call our Customer Care Center and we will help you find an urgent care in your area. An answering service is open after hours.
Examples of Emergency Room Symptoms:
- Broken bones
- Extreme shortness of breath
- Chest pains
- Uncontrolled bleeding
If your life is in immediate danger, call 911. If you need to see a doctor right away, contact your PCP to make an appointment. If your doctor is unable to see you, or the office is not open, Urgent Care is an excellent option.
Ask Yourself These Questions
If you’re still not sure whether to go to Urgent Care or the Emergency Room, just ask yourself these questions:
- Is this something my PCP can take care of in his/her office?
- If yes - call your PCP to schedule an appointment or visit an Urgent Care if your PCP office is not open.
- If no - go to the Emergency Room
- Is this something that-if untreated soon- my life could be in danger or I could lose a body part?
- If yes - go to the Emergency Room
- If no - call your PCP to schedule an appointment or visit an Urgent Care if your PCP office is not open.
What to Do in Case of an Emergency
- Medical emergencies are sudden conditions, which are life or death situations. They may lead to disability or death if not treated as soon as possible. No prior authorization is necessary for emergency care.
- If you feel your symptom is an emergency, call 911. As a member of Banner – University Family Care/ALTCS (BUFC/ALTCS) you have the right to seek Emergency Service at any hospital or other Emergency Room facility (in or out of network).
- Please remember it is always very important to tell the Emergency Department staff that you are a BUFC/ALTCS member and show your AHCCCS Identification Card. If you are unable to do this, have a family member or friend tell the Emergency Department staff on your behalf.
What If You Need Emergency Care Out of Our Service Area?
BUFC/ALTCS pays for emergency care in your service area. BUFC/ALTCS will also pay for emergency care when you are out of your county or out-of-state. If you need emergency care, show your AHCCCS ID so the doctors can notify us.