Deciding Where To Go

Know your ER alternatives before you need them!

  You should probably go to...
If you experience...
Telehealth Your physician's office Retail health clinic Urgent care center Emergency Room
Animal bites        
Back pain    
Bumps, cuts, scrapes  
Burning with urination  
Coughs, sore throat  
Ear or sinus pain  
Eye swelling, irritation, redness or pain  
Mild asthma    
Minor allergic reactions  
Minor fevers, colds  
Minor headaches    
Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea    
Possible broken bones      
Rashes, minor burns  
Sprains, strains    
Any life-threatening or disabling condition        
Chest pain, numbness in face, arm or leg; difficulty speaking        
Coughing up or vomiting blood        
Cut or wound that won't stop bleeding        
High fever with stiff neck, mental confusion or difficulty breathing        
Major injuries        
Severe shortness of breath        
Sudden or unexplained loss of consciousness        
Who usually provides care? Choice of trusted, U.S. board-certified doctors Primary care doctor Physician assistant or nurse practitioner Internal medicine, family practice, pediatric and ER doctors ER doctors and nurses
Typical Cost

Telehealth and each medical center or clinic may have different services available.

Be sure to ask about your plan's network before receiving services.



The percentage of the bill you pay after your deductible has been met.


A fixed amount you pay when you get a covered health service.

Tiered benefit plan

A health care plan featuring multiple levels of benefits based on the network status of a particular provider. 


The annual amount you pay for covered health services before your insurance begins to pay.

emergency care services

Any covered services received in a hospital emergency room setting.


Includes behavioral health treatment, counseling, and psychotherapy

in-network provider

A provider contracted by your insurance company to accept an agreed upon payment for covered services. 

OUT-OF-network provider

A term for providers that aren’t contracting with your insurance company. (Your out-of-pocket costs will tend to be more expensive if you go to an out-of-network provider.)


Your expenses for medical care that aren’t reimbursed by insurance, including deductibles, coinsurance and co-payments.


If you can afford health insurance, but choose not to buy it, you must have a health coverage exemption or pay a tax penalty on your federal income tax return.


The amount you pay to your health insurance company each month. 

Preventive services

Health care services that focus on the prevention of disease and health maintenance.


Services and devices to help you recover if you are injured or have surgery. This includes physical, occupational and speech therapy.

special enrollment period

The time after the Open Enrollment Period when you can still purchase health insurance only if you have a qualifying life event (losing other health coverage, having a baby, getting married, moving).


A physician who has a majority of his or her practice in fields other than internal or general medicine, obstetrics/gynecology, pediatrics or family practice.