Below are answers to some of our frequently asked questions:
- What is a free-standing emergency room?
A free-standing emergency room is a facility open to the public 24 hours a day for the treatment of urgent and emergent medical conditions. The free-standing emergency room is staffed with the same medical personnel and diagnostic equipment that are available at hospital-based emergency rooms. The only difference between a free-standing emergency room and a traditional hospital-based emergency room is a free-standing emergency room is not located on a hospital campus. No appointment is required to be seen at the facility.
- How are you different from an urgent care center?
We are open 24 hours per day, 365 days per year whereas most urgent care centers are only open 8 to 12 hours per day. Free-standing emergency rooms are also capable of treating all urgent and emergent medical conditions such as heart attacks, strokes, respiratory distress, head injuries, abdominal pain, dehydration, orthopedic injuries (fractures), sports injuries and lacerations (cuts, requiring sutures). These types of complaints are beyond the scope of treatment for most urgent care centers. In other words, everything you would visit the hospital-based emergency room for, you could also visit the free-standing emergency room.
- How are you different from a hospital-based emergency room?
Texas Emergency Care provides the same emergency treatment you would receive in a traditional hospital-based ER. The national average wait time to be treated in most hospital-based emergency rooms is four hours. This wait time can be greatly increased in some area hospitals. At Texas Emergency Care Center we pride ourselves on our short wait times. The average wait time is less than 20 minutes (this time can vary depending on the severity of patients being treated). Many hospitals both locally and nationwide do not require that the physicians be Board Certified in Emergency Medicine and often you might be seen by a Nurse Practitioner, Physician Assistant or Resident. Rest assured, at Texas Emergency Care Center you will always be treated by a Board Certified Emergency Medicine Physician.
- Do you accept my insurance?
Texas Emergency Care Center accepts all private insurance.
- What if you are not in my network?
While we have agreements with most major insurance carriers, according to Texas Statutes, all insurance carriers are required to pay in-network benefits for any member presenting for emergency medical treatment. This law prevents valuable time being lost by the patient looking for an “in-network” facility.
- What am I required to pay?
At the time of service, you will be required to pay your emergency room co-pay as designated by your insurance plan. As with any visit to an emergency room, upon receipt of your explanation of benefits (EOB) from the insurance carrier, you may also be required to pay your deductible or any co-insurance that is determined to be patient responsibility by your insurance provider.
- What if I have to be admitted to a hospital?
Texas Emergency Care Center has transfer agreements in place with multiple hospitals in the greater Houston metropolitan area.
- What do I do if I do not have insurance?
Texas Emergency Care Center has a Rapid Pay Program for patients who prefer to pay on a cash basis.