When your primary care doctor is unavailable and you find yourself asking “when are my symptoms serious enough to go to the ER,” leaving you to choose between going to an urgent care or ER in Denver, there are a few things to consider.

What do urgent care centers treat?

Typically, urgent care centers are staffed by nurse practitioners or physician assistants who treat patients for minor conditions when their general primary care doctors are unable to see them. While urgent care centers are overseen by board-certified physicians, the majority of patients treated are not treated by a board-certified physician. An urgent care center is a great place to have minor health inconveniences treated.

Some reasons to visit an urgent care center include:

  • Flu
  • Common cold
  • Boils
  • Rashes
  • Sprains
  • Sore throat
  • Minor burns

When do I go to the ER?

suffering from a potentially life-altering condition and are asking yourself “should I go to the hospital?” it is always safer to go to the emergency room.

Some reasons to go to your closest ER include:

  • Concussion-like symptoms
  • Stroke
  • Severe chest pain
  • Poisoning
  • Seizures
  • Serious burns

For medical emergencies ALWAYS call 9-1-1.

The Swedish advantage

At Swedish Medical Center, our dedicated ER doctors and nurses work around the clock to provide emergency care for the South Denver community. We believe that getting patients out of the waiting room and into the treatment room is important for medical outcomes. 95 percent of our ER patients are taken directly to a treatment room and never have to wait for service.

If you or a loved one is suffering from a medical emergency, we hope you choose Swedish Hospital. The Swedish Medical Center ER is staffed by board-certified physicians 24/7 and includes a Level I trauma center for patients with more critical injuries. In addition, our facility is the only Level I trauma center in Colorado with a dedicated burn unit.  We also have an experienced team of pediatric specialists who treat our youngest ER patients with expertise and compassion.

When deciding on the ER vs. urgent care, know that the expert doctors at Swedish are there for you if you do need immediate care in Denver, Englewood, Lakewood, Littleton and the surrounding neighborhoods.

Please remember

If you have an illness or injury that you believe is life threatening, or that will seriously harm you within 12 to 24 hours without a doctor's care, you should call 9-1-1 or go to the nearest emergency room.

Contact us

Swedish Medical Center is extremely pleased to offer some of the lowest hospital and ER wait times in the Denver area. If you have any further questions about Swedish’s emergency room services or would like a hospital-recommended urgent care in Denver, Englewood or the surrounding areas to visit, feel free to reach to us for more information at (303) 788-6911.