We’ve all been there—that moment when you feel terrible and then you realize all the doctor’s offices are closed. Or maybe you sustain an injury and you’re not sure if you need to head to the emergency room. Knowing where to go can save you time and money. Use the information below to help guide your decision about where to seek care when you need it.
Your Primary Care Doctor
Ideally, everyone should have a medical home at a primary care physician practice (an internal medicine, family medicine, pediatric or internal medicine-pediatrics practice). A medical home is a place where the doctors, nurses and staff know your name and your story, and can provide you with personalized care.
If you have a medical home, that practice can always be your go-to for help figuring out what kind of care you need for your sickness or injury. If you are a patient of a GHS doctor and have a MyChart account, you can send a message to your doctor’s office about whether or not you should make an appointment for your condition. In addition, most of our practices have an on-call doctor available to answer urgent patient questions after business hours.
When to Call 911
Call 911 immediately any time you have any of the following symptoms:
- Difficulty breathing
- Symptoms of a heart attack: chest pain, pain in the left arm or jaw, sudden weakness or dizziness
- Signs of a stroke: slurred speech, severe headache, weakness or numbness on one side of the body, loss of consciousness
- Life- or limb-threatening injury
When to Visit the Emergency Department
The following conditions generally warrant a visit to a hospital emergency department:
- Broken bone with deformity
- Head injury with loss of consciousness
- Severe burns
- Deep cuts
- Severe unexplained pain
- Ingestion of poisons
- Difficulty breathing
- Chest pain
When to Visit a Convenient Care Facility
A convenient care facility—generally open earlier and later than regular doctor offices and on weekends—can provide care for the following conditions:
- Suspected sprain
- Minor head injuries
- Minor burns/sunburn
- Minor cuts and insect bites
- Nausea, vomiting and diarrhea
- Cough, fever, cold and flu
GHS offers convenient care to those of all ages at six locations. MD360’s five locations—in Greenville, Greer, Five Forks, Powdersville (in collaboration with Baptist Easley) and Boiling Springs—offer quick access for residents across the Upstate. Mountain Lakes Community Care in Seneca also offers convenient care services.
When You Can Get Care Using SmartExam
GHS’ SmartExam, an online health evaluation, can connect you with a care provider who can diagnose you and provide you with a treatment plan and prescription (if needed) for common health conditions such as the following:
- Bladder infection/urinary tract infection
- Ear pain
- Eye pain/irritation
- Rashes/skin conditions
- Sinus pain/pressure
- Sore throat
- Yeast infection
After-hours Care for Sick Kids
When your child needs medical attention after normal business hours or on the weekend, GHS offers pediatric after-hours care in both Greenville and Spartanburg. At Children’s Hospital After-hours Care and Children’s Hospital Spartanburg Night Clinic, your child can be seen by a board-certified pediatrician and staff specially trained in pediatric medicine.
Broken Bones, Sprains or Muscle Injuries
When you need urgent care for bone, joint or muscle injuries outside of normal business hours, Steadman Hawkins Injury & Fracture Treatment (Evening S.H.I.F.T) offers care for this type of medical need from 6-9 p.m. on Mondays-Thursdays and 1-5 p.m. Fridays. NOTE: For broken bones with deformity, you will need to visit an emergency center.
Mobile Health Clinic
If you need medical care but can’t visit a regular doctor, either because you don’t have insurance or because you don’t have a way to get to a doctor’s office, you can get care at GHS’ Mobile Health Clinic, which makes regular visits to community centers in Greenville’s Belle Meade, Berea, City View, Dunean, Nicholtown and West Greenville neighborhoods. You also can find a calendar of site locations (in both English and Spanish) on the web page.