Outpatient Care Centers Offering More Services
Depending on what kind of medical treatment or service you need, it may be more cost-effective to receive services from an ambulatory care center, also called an outpatient care center. Here is what you need to know about these facilities.
What Is Considered An Outpatient Service?
Any medical procedure or diagnostic test that doesn't require you to stay overnight in the hospital can be considered an outpatient service. These include such services as:
- Laboratory and diagnostic tests. This can be as simple as a pregnancy test or strep throat swab, or it can be more involved, such as a follow-up ultrasound guided biopsy after a mammogram detected a lump.
- Health and wellness services. This includes services like diet and weight loss counseling by a nutritionist or mental health counseling for depression or grief.
- Rehabilitation services. This may be continuing outpatient drug and rehabilitation counseling, or services for rehabilitation after a stroke or injuries, such as physical and occupational therapy to re-learn the basic activities of daily living.
- Therapy and treatment. Outpatient treatments like chemotherapy and radiation therapy for cancer patients or Botox injections to treat migraines are frequently done in ambulatory care centers.
- Surgeries. Minor surgeries, like a biopsy or mole removal, wisdom teem extraction, and other small procedures that don't require full anesthesia are generally done in outpatient facilities.
What Are The Advantages Of An Outpatient Services Facility?
In addition to being less expensive than what a hospital typically charges, an outpatient services facility and some ambulatory care centers specialize in specific procedures. Knowing the staff and physician has extensive experience in performing certain procedures can give a patient tremendous peace of mind if they need a particular operation. Usually, everything that is needed, from the pre-op process to follow-up therapies can all be received in one place by one team of health care professions.
What Procedures Are Frequently Performed In An Outpatient Services Facility?
Laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis, more commonly known by the acronym LASIK, is the use of a laser to perform surgery on the delicate eye. The procedure is used to correct common visions problems, usually myopia, the inability to see at a distance.
Some outpatient care facilities specialize in joint replacement operations. Outpatient total joint arthroplasty (TJA), the replacement of hip and knee joints, isn't for everyone. Some patients still require having their procedure in the hospital. For those who are in a healthy condition and have after-care at home, this can be a good option. Routine plastic surgery procedures, such as rhinoplasty or a breast augmentation, are also increasingly being performed at ambulatory care centers.