March 2021 - Best Texas ER Open 24/7, No Lines - Altus Emergency

Top Reasons to Visit the ER Right Now!

Top Reasons to Visit the ER Right Now!

Knowing when to go to the ER to seek medical care is often challenging, particularly this last year while we all learned to cope with COVID-19.

Yet, it’s important to keep ourselves healthy, which means addressing potentially serious health problems when they arise.

There are specific symptoms and conditions you should never ignore, as they could indicate serious health issues.  Let’s learn about the top reasons to visit the ER to be prepared and seek help fast.

Baytown

Waxahachie

These are the top reasons you should visit the ER Immediately

Chest Pain

The first of the top reasons to visit the ER is chest pain. When we talk about chest pains, it could be several pain types, including sharp, dull, burning, or crushing. The pain is not limited to the area around your heart; it can extend from your neck to your abdomen.

Chest pain could be a sign of a serious or life-threatening health problem, such as a blood clot, heart attack, or even COVID-19.

Some chest pain results from benign or mild medical conditions such as heartburn and indigestion. Still, the best way to know for sure is to seek immediate medical attention for any chest pain that lasts for more than five minutes.

When it comes to chest pain, better safe than sorry is the right approach!

Abdominal Pain

Just like chest pain, a variety of causes are responsible for your abdominal pain, the next of the top reasons to visit the ER. Many are mild and won’t require a visit to the ER. Still, others could potentially place your life in danger and will therefore require emergency medical care.

 

Causes of abdominal pain that will require ER treatment include:

  • Appendicitis (bust appendix)
  • Bowel obstruction
  • Gallstones
  • Cholecystitis (inflammation of the gallbladder)
  • Diverticulitis (inflammation or infection of pouches that can form in your intestines known as diverticula)
  • Kidney stones
  • Pancreatitis (inflammation in the pancreas)

 

Additionally, some potentially fatal conditions can cause abdominal pain. These cases require immediate diagnosis and treatment in the ER:

  • AAA (abdominal aortic aneurysm)
  • Ectopic pregnancy (ruptured)
  • Ischemic bowel
  • Perforated bowel or stomach
  • Bleeding or ruptured stomach ulcers

 

Whenever you experience unexplained, severe abdominal pain, it’s best to come to the nearest Altus Emergency center to be examined by a professional.

abdominal-pain-and-cramps

Upper Respiratory Infections (URI)

Another common top reasons to visit the ER was highly prevalent during the pandemic, upper respieratory infections.  Both bacteria and viruses can cause severe infections. However, the cause of most upper respiratory infections is viruses.

Viral infections like the common cold and the flu are familiar to all of us. Yet, we now face a more severe type of viral infection which is COVID-19.

 

Regardless of the virus responsible for the infection, you will need to visit the ER if:

  • You are experiencing severe symptoms
  • You are part of a high-risk group

 

Signs of infectious diseases vary. However, most share these symptoms:

  • Trouble breathing
  • Cough
  • Nasal congestion and runny nose
  • Pain or pressure in the sinus area
  • Fever
  • Sore throat

 

Other less common symptoms include:

  • Loss of sense of smell (hyposmia)
  • Body aches
  • Headache

 

You should come to the ER as soon as possible if you experience any of the following:

  • Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
  • Trouble breathing
  • Coughing blood
  • Loss of smell and taste
  • Fever or chills that don’t improve with treatment
  • Feeling confused or disoriented
  • Cough turns brassy or has a barking sound
  • Trouble swallowing
  • Symptoms last more than ten days or worsen after improving

Broken Bones and Strains

Broken bones vary in severity and are a top reasons to visit the ER especially during spring and summer.  Some injuries can wait until you can see a doctor. But if you notice the bone protrudes through the skin, or if the limb is severely misaligned or mangled by the trauma, you need to head to the nearest Altus Emergency Center.

If you are unsure whether you fractured a bone or not, the only way to know for sure is to get examined by a doctor. 

 

In addition to the emergency symptoms mentioned before, these symptoms will let you know if you need to visit the ER:

  • Bleeding
  • Severe pain
  • Bruising or swelling at the site of injury

 

Muscle strains can happen when at any time. When you are at work, exercising, playing sports, or doing chores around the house.

Torn muscles can cause severe discomfort. Without proper treatment, you run the risk of living with chronic pain and weakness in the injured area. You will also have a higher risk of recurring injuries during everyday use, negatively impacting your quality of life.

Therefore, if you suspect you may have a torn muscle, it’s best to come to our ER for a proper diagnosis and treatment.

Head Trauma

Head injuries can be serious. Even if you can’t see any physical evidence of trauma and don’t experience any immediate symptoms, you still need to be vigilant.  It is recommended to head for an ER as they are specially equipped with the required imaging technology in order to obtain a proper diagnosis.

 

Symptoms that suggest you sustained a severe head injury and need to go to the ER as soon as possible include:

  • Loss of consciousness at the time of the accident
  • Feeling confused or disoriented after the injury
  • You were involved in a car crash, even a minor one
  • Trouble keeping balance
  • Trouble remember recent events or events involving the injury
  • Seizures
  • Trouble speaking
  • Severe headaches
  • Nausea or vomiting after the injury
  • Vision changes, having trouble seeing or focusing
  • Changes in behavior after the accident

Fever

A fever is a temporary rise in your body temperature. It is often associated with an illness. However, a persistent or unusually high fever that won’t go away with over-the-counter treatment can signify infection.

When to Come to Altus ER

When to Come to Altus ER

  • Babies under three months with a temperature higher than 100.4 F
  • Infants and small children with temperatures higher than 102 F
  • Adults with a temperature of 103 F or higher
  • Rush to the nearest ER if you also have nausea, headache, a stiff neck, confusion, or a rash in addition to a fever. You may have meningitis
  • In addition to a high fever, you also have diarrhea, vomiting, headache, tiredness, confusion, and dizziness. It could be Toxic Shock Syndrome

 

At Altus Emergency Centers, we provide you with the best diagnostic technology and the most qualified physicians to treat all your emergencies. We are open 24/7. We adhere to the strictest safety protocols and best practices to ensure our patient’s, visitors’, and staff’s safety.

Altus Emergency Centers Texas is Here for You 24/7

Altus ER. We-Have-Dedicated-Specialists

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies.  We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times.

Malignant Hypertension – When to Go to the ER

Malignant Hypertension – When to Go to the ER

It’s Malignant Hypertension Awareness & Training Month. At Altus Emergency Centers, we want to take this opportunity to educate our communities of this potentially fatal condition.

What is Malignant Hypertension?

In simple terms, malignant hypertension is extremely high blood pressure (180/120 or higher) that comes suddenly. It can cause severe damage to internal organs such as the kidneys, blood vessels, and heart. Malignant hypertension is also known as a hypertension crisis or emergency.

Because of the high risk for organ damage, malignant hypertension is considered a medical emergency. Like with heart attacks and stroke, the sooner you get to the ER and receive treatment, the better the chances of survival.

What Are the Causes of Hypertension Emergency?

There are many contributing factors to a hypertension emergency, but some groups have a higher risk factor.

Malignant hypertension typically affects people who have a history of chronic high blood pressure. It can happen when a hypertensive patient discontinues their medication or misses a dose.

Other risk groups include smokers and African American males.

Additionally, some medical conditions are associated with an increased risk for hypertensive emergencies, these include:

 

  • Kidney failure or kidney disorders
  • A narrowing of the aorta
  • Use of illegal drugs such as cocaine and amphetamines
  • The use of oral contraceptives
  • Pregnancy-induced high blood pressure (toxemia) or preeclampsia
  • Spinal cord injuries that lead parts of the nervous system to become overactive
  • Certain autoimmune diseases, including systemic lupus erythematosus

Warning Signs of Malignant Hypertension

One of the most significant challenges with high blood pressure is that most patients don’t experience any symptoms. Because of this, many patients don’t know they are sick until the disease has progressed.

Luckily, malignant hypertension does have distinct warning signs that can let someone know they are in trouble.

The most common symptoms of a hypertension emergency include:

 

  • Chest pain
  • Sudden vision problems, including blurred vision
  • Shortness of breath
  • Changes in mental status, including confusion, anxiety, inability to concentrate, and sleeplessness
  • Weakness or numbness in the arms, face, or legs
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Headache
  • Seizure
  • Not urinating enough
chest pain Medicare Patients Visit the ER

Complications of Malignant Hypertension

Malignant hypertension is a severe condition that can be life-threatening. As such, hypertension crises are time-sensitive emergencies. The longer the situation goes untreated, the more likely it becomes for the patient to suffer long-term organ damage or even death.

A severe hypertension crisis can lead to any of these dire complications:

 

  • Brain damage caused by insufficient blood reaching the brain, stroke, or seizures
  • Kidney failure
  • Heart damage, including angina, heart attack, and arrhythmia
  • Pulmonary edema (fluid in the lungs)
  • Vision damage, including permanent blindness

How to Prevent Hypertension Emergencies

Hypertension emergencies can happen to anyone, including children. However, there are ways to prevent it.

  • Regularly monitor your blood pressure, especially if you know you have high blood pressure
  • Take your medication as prescribed by your doctor
  • Quit smoking
  • Eat a healthy diet that is low in salt and saturated fats
  • Maintain a healthy weight

When to Go to The ER

It’s vital for anyone who experiences any of the above symptoms to seek immediate emergency medical attention. Individuals with a history of high blood pressure need to be especially vigilant.

If you suspect you may be having a malignant hypertension episode, don’t delay call 911 or have someone drive you to the nearest Altus Emergency Center. Acting fast could save your life!

Altus Emergency Centers Texas is Here for You 24/7

Altus ER. We-Have-Dedicated-Specialists

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies.  We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times.

Best Decorated Easter Egg Virtual Contest

Best Decorated Easter Egg Virtual Contest
One Grand Prize Winner per Altus Location!

It’s time to get creative! We are thrilled to announce our second giveaway of the year, our Best Decorated Easter Egg Virtual Contest!  At Altus Emergency, we have several locations as part of our grand Altus family, Altus Baytown ER, Altus ER Lake Jackson, Altus Lumberton Hospital, and Altus ER Waxahachie.  Part of our tradition is to give back to the community.  According to our grand tradition, this year, through Altus Gives, we are hosting a Best Decorated Easter Egg Virtual Contest that everyone is invited to participate in!

GRAND PRIZE is a FREE Easter-Themed Basket Full of Goodies & Free $50 Gift Card to the best decorated Easter Eggs!

IT’S FREE to participate! Here’s how:

It’s 100% FREE to Participate in the Best Decorated Easter Egg Virtual Contest.

It’s easy to participate but hurry! One lucky winner per facility will win a grand prize. The draw date is Easter Sunday April 4th, 2021.  All Sweepstakes Official Rules Apply.

So get your creative juices flowing and enter through our social media pages!  We can’t wait to see the super awesome Easter eggs!  Below is how to enter through Facebook and Instagram.

Participate Through Facebook:

Participate Through Instagram:

  • Follow our IG:  Altus Emergency
  • Add a photo of your decorated Easter egg entry on your Instagram account with the hashtag #AltusEasterContest2021
  • Tag a friend!

Scroll down to see the Grand Prize Easter Gift baskets…

One Grand Prize Winner per Location

Each of our four Altus locations have a delightful Easter Basket packed full of fun and yummy goodies including one Free $50 gift card that will be awarded to the best decorated, most creative Easter egg participant.  Check out the photos of each basket per location below:

Baytown

Lake Jackson

Lumberton

Waxahachie

Tune in on Easter Sunday April 4th, 2021 for the Winners!

Keep your eyes and ears glued to our social media pages find out the outcome!  On April, 4th 2021, we will announce the Grand Prize Winners.  Thank you for everyone who participates and good luck!  Don’t forget that we are here for you 24/7 as the safest ER option near you.  We cover all ER needs from babies to Medicare.  Stay safe and take care.

Rules:

  • Only participants that follow the steps to participate will be entered into the contest.
  • In order to receive your prize, the winners must present a valid photo ID.
  • The following are not eligible to participate in the contest: employees of the company, affiliates, or any agency working with the company, and their immediate families.
  • Altus Emergency is not liable should the Social Media site experience any issues or downtime.
  • Any disputes relating to eligibility will be determined solely by Altus Emergency.
  • Altus Emergency reserves the right to modify or discontinue this program at any time without prior notice.
  • The winners will be selected and announced 04-04-2021.

Altus Emergency Centers Texas is

Here for You 24/7

Altus ER. We-Have-Dedicated-Specialists

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies.  We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, and bone breaks, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times.  After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process.  We are here to help you get well and stay well!

Head Injury Symptoms to go to the ER

Is My Head Injury a Concussion, a TBI?

Should I go to the ER?

Head injuries can range from mild to life-threatening.  A type of head injury, traumatic brain injuries (TBI) are of great concern among the medical community, as numbers suggest these types of injuries contribute to about 30% of all injury deaths.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there some 2.8 million TBI-related emergency room visits per day, and 153 people in the United States die every day from injuries that include traumatic brain injuries.

Given how big this problem is, we should ask ourselves when does a head injury require emergency medical attention, and can these be treated at an urgent care center or should we go to the ER?

Let’s start with understanding what a Traumatic Brain Injury is.

Head-injury-ER Texas

What Is a TBI and What Causes It?

As may have guessed, a traumatic brain injury involves injuries to our head, it can be caused by a bump, blow or jolt to the head and it is strong enough to create a disruption to the brain’s normal functioning. Thankfully, not all bumps to the head result in a TBI, and those don’t require you visit the emergency room.

Traumatic Brain Injuries range from “mild” where there is a brief change of mental status or consciousness to severe where patients are unconscious for an extended period or present symptoms like memory loss. Mild TBI’s are known as concussions, and they are the most common type of brain injury.

This does not mean that concussions can be ignored, any type of brain injury regardless of how harmless it may seem requires immediate medical attention.

Can Traumatic Brain Injuries Be Treated at an Urgent Care Center?

The answer is no, and here is why. The severity of a traumatic brain injury is difficult if not impossible to diagnose without the use of CT Scans, and X-rays, the blow might have caused a small skull fracture that is not visible, or there might be swelling around the brain.

Since urgent care centers do not have direct access to the necessary diagnostic equipment, they cannot treat these types of injuries. If you suspect you may have a concussion or other type of brain injury and you visit an urgent care center, they will refer you to the emergency room, and you will have to pay for both consultations.

If you believe you or a loved one has sustained any type of brain injury, you need to come to the nearest Altus Emergency Center as soon as possible. Getting diagnosed and treated for a brain injury promptly can significantly reduce any permanent or long-lasting effects from the injury.

Head-injury-ER Texas

When Should You Visit Altus Emergency for a Head Injury?

As we mentioned, not all head bumps will require you pay us a visit, however, if you receive a blow to the head either from playing sports, falling, or being in a car crash, and experience any of the following symptoms, you need to come in for a medical evaluation as soon as possible:

  •    You lost consciousness at the time of the injury
  •    You feel confused or disoriented after the injury
  •    You experience a headache along with nausea or vomiting

You should monitor anyone who has hit their head and bring them in for evaluation if you notice any of these symptoms:

  •    Unusual behavior or confusion
  •    Their symptoms seem to progress or worsen
  •    They seem weak, complain of numbness or have trouble speaking (slurred speech)
  •    They have difficulty with their eye movements
  •    Their headache won’t go away or becomes more severe
  •    Seizure
  •    They have difficulty waking up or staying alert
  •    There is discharged of clear fluid or blood from their nose or ears

 

As you can see, all brain injuries are dangerous as they can quickly develop complications. For this reason, if you suspect that you or someone you know has a traumatic brain injury, your best bet is to visit the nearest Altus Emergency Center for a proper diagnosis and fast treatment.

Concussion Emergency

Know Where to Go In the Event of an Emergency

If you are ever in need of quality emergency care, you will not have to wait in line at Altus Emergency Centers. All of our ERs are fully equipped and open 24/7.

Altus Emergency Centers Texas is Here for You 24/7

altus emergency 24 hr ER Texas

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies.  We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times.

Billing Team Employee Spotlight 2021

Billing Team Employee Spotlight

We love and appreciate every one of our staff members. It’s truly an honor to work with such a wonderful group of people.

This month we will be shining the spotlight on our very hard-working billing team, which is why we are doing this month’s article on the billing team employee spotlight.  Our billing department works a little differently from most of our other work teams since they handle all the billing from all our locations from a centralized hub at Lumberton, Texas.

This means some of you haven’t had the pleasure to meet or work directly with this outstanding group of individuals, and that is why we wanted to introduce them to all of you.  So, without further adieu, get to know the Billing Team Employee Spotlight 2021!

What Does Our Billing Team Do?

Our billing department is critical to our financial cycle. As their efforts ensure we get timely reimbursements from the insurance companies and patients.

 

These are just some of their daily responsibilities:

  • Submitting medical claims on behalf of patients and our organization
  • Preparing and reviewing patient invoices to ensure they are accurate and complete
  • Collect any missing information from patients to process their insurance claim
  • Following up on all submitted claims within the standard billing cycle
  • Checking insurance payments for accuracy
  • Follow up on patient insurance claims
  • Working with patients to set up payment plans when necessary

 

Our billing teams’ job requires a keen eye and attention to detail along with ample experience in healthcare services.

Our fantastic billing staff is proficient in CPT and ICD-10 Coding. They possess excellent communication skills and are world-class problem solvers.

Getting to Know the Staff

We sat down to ask our team a few questions about their work and personal experience at Altus Health. Here is what we learned.

Kelly Curtis

 

Q/ What do you do at Altus?

A/ I am the Billing Manager

 

Q/ How do you think this makes a difference in patient’s lives?

A/ Helping with a bill can change someone’s whole outlook. When the patient calls upset and ends the call with what a wonderful company we are to work with

 

Q/ How long have you been a Billing Manager at Altus?

A/ I have worked for Altus for five years

 

Q/ What is your favorite part of working at Altus?

A/ My work Family

 

Q/ What do you do when you are not working at Altus?

A/ Hanging out with my family

 

Q/ What is an ability you wish you had?

A/ To be able to see the future

Jennifer Broussard

 

Q/ What do you do at Altus?

A/ I work in the Billing Department

 

Q/ How do you think this makes a difference in patient’s lives?

A/ We try and get less out of pocket for patients

 

Q/ How long have you worked in the billing department

A/ 5 years on May 26

 

Q/ What is your favorite part of working at Altus?

A/ The family atmosphere we have with all of us

 

Q/ What do you do when you are not working at Altus?

A/ Spend time with my kids and family

 

Q/ What is an ability you wish you had?

A/ To read minds

Lisa Huebel

 

Q/ What do you do at Altus?

A/ I work the daily billing for accounts receivable in payment posting. I make sure the claims are processed correctly, and if not, send them to be reconsidered.

I call insurance companies when it is needed and patients for information to process the claim correctly. I also post all other payments from patients and other companies. I make sure the posting balances daily with the Bank Statements.

 

Q/ How do you think this makes a difference in patient’s lives?

A/ Our work makes a difference in patients’ lives because we make sure we process their claims correctly and getting them the most benefits.

Our efforts help relieve them of any extra financial obligation that they do not owe. We also help patients when we post their payments accurately

 

 Q/ How long have you been a poster?

A/ I have been a poster since September 2015

 

Q/ What is your favorite part of working at Altus?

A/ My favorite part working at Altus is the family I work with. We have all grown together, learning so much about insurance and how each one works, which would best help the processing of claims for the patient’s benefit.

 

Q/ What do you do when you are not working at Altus?

A/ I spend as much time as I can with my grandchildren and family. Especially what we have all been through this last year, it has made it even more important to spend time with family. I attend church regularly and help out with all the events we do to help the community. I love camping and fishing, and traveling to see my daughter in Dallas. I have a little four-footed child at home that demands a lot of attention and throwing the ball; his name is Mac.

 

Q/ What is an ability you wish you had?

A/ To have a photographic memory.

Thank you to our wonderful Billing Department for all that you do to improve our service and the lives of our patients.

Altus Emergency Centers Texas is Here for You 24/7

Altus ER. We-Have-Dedicated-Specialists

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies.  We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times.

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