PORTLAND, Maine, July 20 (UPI) — A program offered by Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Maine provides non-emergency care that helps avoid busy hospital emergency rooms.
“If you have a less serious issue — like a sprained ankle, insect bite or severe sun burn — a walk-in center may be a far better option and save you time as well as money,” Jeffrey Holmstrom, medical director of Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Maine, said in a statement.
Since last summer, Anthem has put together a network of 19 walk-in centers across Maine, which, in addition to lower out-of-pocket costs, offer wait times far shorter than those of emergency room non-critical care, Holmstrom says.
Generally, walk-in centers may be used for:
– Minor allergic reactions.
– Mild asthma.
– Coughs, sore throat.
– Bumps, minor cuts, scrapes.
– Rashes, minor burns.
– Minor fevers, colds.
– Minor headaches.
– Ear or sinus pain.
– Burning with urination.
– Eye swelling, irritation, redness or pain.
– Back pain.
– Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea.
– Minor animal bites.
Emergency rooms should be used for:
– Any life-threatening or disabling condition.
– Sudden or unexplained loss of consciousness.
– Chest pain; numbness in the face, arm or leg; difficulty speaking.
– Severe shortness of breath.
– High fever with stiff neck, mental confusion or difficulty breathing.
– Coughing or a wound that won’t stop bleeding.
– Major injuries.
– Possible broken bones.
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