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When to call 911

A 911 emergency is any situation that requires immediate assistance from the police, fire department or ambulance. Examples include:

  • A fire
  • A crime, especially if in progress
  • A car crash, especially if someone is injured
  • A medical emergency, especially for symptoms that require immediate medical attention

If you’re not sure whether the situation is a true emergency, officials recommend calling 911 and letting the call-taker determine whether you need emergency help.

When to go to the Emergency Room

Visit the emergency room if you are experiencing a serious medical issue. Examples include:

  • Trouble breathing or shortness of breath
  • Pain or pressure in the chest or upper abdomen
  • Abnormal pain in the abdomen
  • Fainting or feeling dizzy or weak
  • Visual irregularities
  • Sudden or sharp pain
  • Bleeding that won’t stop
  • Severe or ongoing vomiting or diarrhea
  • Coughing or vomiting blood
  • Trouble speaking
  • Confusion or altered mental state
  • Feeling suicidal

UI Health Emergency Room is located at 1740 West Taylor Street, Chicago (directions). For more information, please call 312.996.7296.

When to visit Urgent Care

Visit urgent care when you are ill or injured but the condition does not pose an immediate, serious threat to your health or life. Examples include:

  • Injuries requiring plain X-rays
  • Simple lacerations and other injuries
  • Colds/Flu symptoms
  • Other minor illnesses

UI Health Urgent Care is located at 1220 South Wood Street (directions).  For more information, please call 312.996.2000.