Most D.C. area drivers will be in at least one car accident during their driving career. Most of these car accidents are just minor fender benders but occasionally a serious car accident occurs. In fact, each year almost 40 million people visit the emergency room each year as the result of an accident. If a D.C. resident is involved in a car accident they may wonder if they need to go to the emergency room.
D.C. residents who have been in an accident have many places they can go for treatment options. These include the emergency room, urgent care, walk in clinics, chiropractor, etc. Each option has its own benefits and shortcomings but there are also several benefits that an emergency room can provide including:
- Helicopter and ambulance services
- Access to specialists
- Full service diagnostic tests
- On-site radiology, CT and MRI
- Patient cannot be turned away
There are disadvantages to the emergency room including wait time and the charges that may incur. A 24/7 urgent care clinic may be a better option as their wait times are less and they also have on-site radiology. These clinics can be especially helpful for accident victims who start noticing pain and soreness hours after the accident and are unsure if the emergency room is the right place to go.
It is common for an accident victim to believe they are fine immediately following an accident but then begin to develop symptoms of injuries a few hours or even days later. Delayed injuries caused by a car accident include:
- Back pain
- Abdominal pain
- Confusion and loss of motor skills due to a traumatic brain injury
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
If a person has been in a car accident due to no fault of their own, they may want to speak with a legal professional who is skilled in personal injury. An attorney will investigate the cause of the accident and who is at fault as well as assist their client in seeking out the best medical care. Compensation may be available for medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages and other damages.