Differences between Emergency Rooms and Urgent Care


 
Dr. Hashibul Hannan, a board-certified emergency room physician says that exercising a little caution can help Texas families avoid preventable injuries and unnecessary trips to the ER.

HOUSTON, TX – As Texans brace for chilly days and cold nights in the coming weeks, a Houston emergency room physician is urging Texans to exercise caution to avoid unnecessary trips to the emergency room due to preventable injuries and illnesses.

Dr. Hashibul Hannan, a board-certified emergency medicine physician and managing partner at SignatureCare Emergency Center said that emergency rooms usually get flooded with patients suffering from cold weather-related injuries during this period, but that it doesn’t have to be so.

“Normally during this time, we see more head, spine, and back injuries from car accidents as a result of slippery or icy roads, and broken bones or dislocated joints from falls around the house due to porches or walkways that have accumulated ice.

“But most of these injuries are preventable. If you do not need to be outside, then stay indoors and if you have to drive, pay attention to the condition of the road and slow down. It doesn’t take much to get into an accident that could lead to injuries, pain, and suffering,” he said.

Dr. Hannan said that with the omicron variant of COVID-19 raging throughout Texas, many emergency rooms may be nearing capacity, and getting flooded with cold weather patients could add another layer to an already difficult situation.

“With COVID-19 still raging, it is advisable to do everything possible to avoid going to the emergency room. Even though there may be beds available in your local ER, a flood of patients can easily overwhelm the system,” Dr. Hannan said.

“Falls by the elderly are common during cold season, so it is important that if you are going to do stuff outside the house during this time that you are extra careful. Take all the necessary precautions and ensure that someone else knows where you are at all times so they can get you assistance if you should need it.”

He said he is particularly worried about the elderly, who may fall outside the home and may not be able to get up or get help.

“Falls by the elderly are common during the cold season, so it is important that if you are going to do stuff outside the house during this time that you are extra careful. Take all the necessary precautions and ensure that someone else knows where you are at all times so they can get you assistance if you should need it,” he continued.

Dr. Hannan stressed the need to cover up properly while outside as the temperature can drop quickly.

“Hypothermia and frostbites are real problems because here in Texas, we are not used to the cold weather. People in Minnesota, Michigan, or other such places are used to the temperature dipping down into single digits but here in Texas, we are not. So, it important that you cover up whenever you head outside the house,” he added.

Some cold weather essentials for the whole family according to the emergency room physician, include warm clothes, jackets or thick sweaters, boots, mittens to cover both hands, and a cap to cover your head.

He added that it is important to be extra cautious if you are going to have children with you when you are out and about.

More information about SignatureCare Emergency Center is available at https://ercare24.com.