Vail Daily letter: Health care questions | VailDaily.com

Vail Daily letter: Health care questions

Recently, the Daily has had numerous articles, letters to the editor and ads concerning health care and health care costs.

Many people (including myself) are confused about the differences between services and costs of urgent care, emergency room care and a new term I have seen, emergent care.

Doris Kirchner's commentary in Sept. 26's Daily alluded to urgent care being less expensive.

"Our urgent care clinics in Avon and Gypsum have operated as a combination of urgent care and emergency care department for many years, therefore carrying higher costs for patients."

My husband and I have used this clinic a few times for "minor" health issues and had no idea we were paying higher prices because it was also considered an emergency room clinic.

If someone goes to the combined Centura Health Clinic in Avon, is the price determined on what type of service is given or simply the fact that they are going to a clinic that combines urgent care and emergency room?

Recommended Stories For You

I have always heard that too many people go to an emergency room when they have a "minor" health problem, thus driving up costs.

If we are billed for the type of clinic we go to as opposed to the services received, we need to know this. As an example, I do know that a person (or a person's insurance) pays much more for a flu shot at a clinic than getting it at Wal-Mart/City Market/Target.

I, for one, would be most appreciative if someone would explain the differences in pricing for the "same service" at an urgent care facility, a combined urgent care and emergency room and a hospital emergency room. This would help us to make more informed decisions and, hopefully, begin to lower health care costs for everyone.

Can anyone out there help?

Joyce Pfaff