Urgent Care

How Much Does Urgent Care Cost Without Insurance in 2023?

Khang T. Vuong, MHA
Khang T. Vuong, MHA9 Aug 2023

The costs for an individual without insurance range anywhere from $80 to $280 for a basic Level I urgent care visit and $140 to $440 for an advanced Level II visit. The cost for your visit is also dependent on your location. Urgent care is an optimal solution for affordability and convenience, whether for a fever, a sore throat, or even a sports injury.

If you don't have insurance or have a high deductible, a membership with Mira can help you get urgent care at $99 fixed copay including in-house rapid tests.

Method: To create this report, the Mira research team conducted the most comprehensive pricing research to date by surveying out-of-pocket costs at 1229 urgent care clinics across 43 U.S. states. The initial research took three months, and we are actively updating the information periodically. 

A typical urgent care visit costs between $200-$360 out of pocket

The cost of an average urgent care visit that includes a 20-30 minute with a medical provider and multiple diagnostic tests (flu, strep, urine test) ranges anywhere between $189 and $299 out of pocket. For more complex visits that involve imaging services like X-rays or ultra round, expect to pay 30-50% more. For example, a sprain-related visit that requires an X-rays scan could cost up to $300-$450 out of pocket. Highest self-pay rate doesn't necessarily mean that's the maximum amount you will pay. Your final price depends on what happens at the clinic and how much the clinic decides to bill you if you don't have insurance. 

Suppose you have insurance and haven't met your deductible. In that case, the cost of an urgent care visit is often higher, between $200 and $400, because insurance usually reimburses more than self-pay rates.

The average cost of an urgent care visit (all included) at popular clinics (data as of 2023)

Merchant NameAverage cost/visit
MD NOW$305

Factors That Influence Your Urgent Care Cost

Several factors impact how much your urgent care visit will cost. These factors will directly influence how much you will be charged at the next urgent care visit. The most common factors that influence the cost of urgent care are: 

1. Complexity - how much clinical expertise is needed

At most urgent care clinics, there are different service levels, typically either minor or complex.  Complex visits usually require multiple tests or procedures. 

For example, the treatment for strep throat requires an examination and additional fees for extra services like a strep test, a Flu test, and a COVID-19 test to rule out other infections (this usually adds $90-$160); this would be a level I visit. However, the cost could be much higher for conditions requiring different procedures like x-rays, between $250 to $500.

When looking at the cost of urgent care clinics, it is essential to identify which level (I or II) you need to know what price you will be paying. Infectious diseases like flu, strep, and so on usually fall under basic visits, while sports injuries requiring X-rays or minor surgeries would fall under more advanced visits.

A minor urgent care visit will cost between $80 to $280, while an advanced or complex visit will cost $140 to $440.

2. Time - how long do you spend seeing the provider

All medical clinics charge an office visit fee every time you have to see a provider, regardless of the reason. Each urgent care center has a different office visit cost. The office visit cost is the baseline fee patients have to pay. 

The office visit cost is typically between $100 and $200, but it may be more expensive to include some basic tests and procedures. According to our research, the average baseline office visit cost at urgent care is $141.60.

Below is a general guideline on how clinics charge based on time spent:

Visit levelNew patient codeNew patient time 
Level 29920215-29
Level 39920330-44
Level 49920445-59
Level 59920560-74
Established patient codeEstablished patient time 
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3. Location of the urgent care clinic

The cost for an urgent care visit without insurance will depend on where the urgent care center is located. As labor plays a big part in the clinic's operations, factors like provider supply and demand will directly influence how much a clinic will set its price. 

Average Out-of-Pocket Urgent Care Costs Per Visit in Major Cities*

CityAverage cost of an urgent care visit
New York City, NY$257
Las Vegas, NV$242
San Antonio, TX$194
Dallas, TX$236
Philadelphia, PA$193
Portland, OR$239
Phoenix, AZ$164
Fort Worth, TX$229
Seattle, WA$241
Tucson, AZ$179
Chicago, IL$215
Austin, TX$237
Denver, CO$259
Atlanta, GA$200
Cincinnati, OH$150
Richmond, VA$191
Houston, TX$229
Nashville, TN$255
Pittsburgh, PA$155
San Diego, CA$215
Brooklyn, NY$246
Los Angeles, CA$252
Wilmington, DE$170
Bronx, NY$199
Columbus, OH$195
San Francisco, CA$304
Pasadena, CA$248
Asheville, NC$223
Baltimore, MD$229
Washington, DC$241
Scottsdale, AZ$177
Oklahoma City$172

*These costs include an office visit plus in-house tests and possible X-rays.

Urgent Care Cost Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Below we break down the most popular frequently asked questions about the cost of urgent care visits.

What services do urgent care centers provide?

In general, urgent care centers offer treatment for non-life-threatening medical conditions, such as: 

Urgent care centers oftentimes provide the following lab testing services as well:

Most urgent care centers also provide routine care, such as:

What’s the difference between urgent care and the emergency room?

Whether you go to urgent care or the emergency room depends on the medical situation you are in. If you are in an emergency, you should always go to the emergency room because urgent care can not provide the level of care you may need. Suppose you are not experiencing an urgent medical situation and the hours are between 8 AM and 5 PM (unless the center is open later or earlier). In that case, you may want to consider visiting an urgent care center. 

Urgent care can treat minor fractures, nonemergency x-rays, back pain, and cold and flu symptoms. At the same time, the emergency room may treat more severe conditions, such as chest pain, heart attack symptoms, and difficulty breathing.

When you have ailments like the flu or cold, it is much more affordable to go to an urgent care clinic instead of the emergency room. Because of the high cost of operations (24/7 staffing, expensive equipment, etc.), a simple trip to the emergency room could easily cost over $500, with or without insurance.

Do urgent care centers accept insurance?

It is up to the insurance provider whether they cover urgent care centers or not. However, many insurance providers cover urgent care visits, but patients will be expected to pay the co-pay or deductible implied by their plan. 

You should also be aware that an urgent care center may choose not to accept your insurance, even if your insurance provider would otherwise pay for the care. This could be avoided by calling the urgent care center ahead of time and asking if they accept your insurance.

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Avoiding High Costs at Urgent Care

Without insurance, urgent care may incur high medical costs. However, there are ways you can avoid this. The most common ways to cut your medical costs are: 

Look Up "Self-pay" Rates

Websites such as Healthcare Bluebook allow you to estimate how much your urgent care visit is going to cost. The self-pay rate is the charge set by clinics for patients without insurance. It may also be possible to get a payment plan.

Call Before You Go

Calling ahead of time allows you to check for available time slots and better understand how the urgent care center charges patients without insurance. While calling beforehand, you may want to ask about their pricing for patients paying out of pocket.

Ask the Right Questions

When going for your visit, make a list of questions regarding pricing and services for the visit. Here are some examples:

  • How much will this test cost?
  • How much will it cost if I need an x-ray or additional testing?
  • Is this the only test I need for today?
  • How much will this prescription medicine cost?
  • Is there an office visit fee?
  • What other administrative fees can I expect?
  • Are there separate charges for the office visit and in-house lab tests?
  • Is there a bundle price for certain services?

Bottom Line

Visiting an urgent care center is a more affordable method of receiving treatment when compared to going to the emergency room. Various factors influence cost, including location, level of care, and office visit cost. 

Khang T. Vuong, MHA

Khang T. Vuong received his Master of Healthcare Administration from the Milken Institute School of Public Health at the George Washington University. He was named Forbes Healthcare 2021 30 under 30. Vuong spoke at Stanford Medicine X, HIMSS conference, and served as a Fellow at the Bon Secours Health System.