In the past, when your doctor ordered a series of lengthy tests or when you needed treatment for any number of diseases, including chemotherapy, you needed to check into the hospital and stay through the duration of the treatment.
In addition to being inconvenient, staying overnight could also cost you a small fortune, especially if your insurance provider only offers partial coverage. Outpatient services are available through several medical providers, and they are a great option in several cases. If you're not sure whether outpatient care is right for you, here are a few questions you might have:
What Services Are Offered Through Outpatient Care?
There are several services provided through outpatient care, and many may surprise you. Here are a handful of services you can typically find at most outpatient care centers:
- Mental health services
- Drug and alcohol treatments
- Physical therapy
- Radiation services, including X-rays and MRIs
- Chemotherapy and other cancer treatments
- Weight loss treatments
- A variety of procedures and minor surgeries, including gall bladder removal, hernia repairs, tendon repairs and cataract surgery
Are There Benefits to Outpatient Care?
In addition to being very convenient, there are several additional benefits of outpatient care services. For example, if you need services several days a week, such as drug and alcohol treatments or chemotherapy, going to an outpatient clinic allows you to continue living your everyday life with far fewer disruptions.
Additionally, if you are seeking drug and alcohol treatments, an inpatient facility can often feel isolating for the patient. Outpatient services, on the other hand, can help an addict feel less stressed and more connected to their friends and family, which is critical.
How Do I Find an Outpatient Care Provider?
If you've never been to an outpatient clinic before, there are several considerations that you should keep in mind when determining which provider is best for you:
- Consider a clinic that is close to your home or work, especially if you are visiting the facility several times a week
- Ask the providers in your area if you can receive multiple services at one center, if this is necessary
- Inquire if the center accepts your insurance
- When in doubt, ask your doctor for a referral
Whether you need physical therapy, cancer treatments or want to lose weight with your doctor's assistance, there are several instances when choosing an outpatient facility just makes sense. If you've never been to an outpatient care center before, do your homework to find a facility that works for your needs.