Know Where to Go for the Right Care at the Right Time in the Right Place

Seeking Appropriate Care in the Right Place Helps Reduce Emergency Department Overcrowding and Wait Times

(Fort Myers, Fla. –Jan. 18, 2017) --- Southwest Florida’s annual surge of seasonal residents and visitors is resulting in increased volumes in Lee Health hospitals and emergency departments (EDs). This increase in patient volumes leads to overcrowding and longer wait times. To help alleviate traffic in the EDs, Lee Health encourages the community to access the right care at the right time in the right place. Here is a breakdown of options to help people know where to go for the most prompt, appropriate treatment.

Primary Care Physician’s Office:

Lee Health has Lee Physician Group primary care offices located throughout our community, and some offices have weekend and evening hours. Patients are seen in the primary care physician’s office by appointment only, and this is the best option for:

  • Minor injuries/complaints
  • Chronic illness Management
  • Health maintenance
  • Immunizations
  • Screenings/tests
  • Preventive care

Appointments in the primary care physician’s office save patients time and money. If you do not have a primary care physician, the Lee Physician Group call center is available evenings and weekends from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. - seven days a week and can make appointments for you, call 239-481-4111.

Convenient Care

Lee Health has three Convenient Care locations—two in Fort Myers and one in Cape Coral. Convenient Care walk-in medical offices are open 7 a.m.-7 p.m., seven days a week and patients do not need an appointment. Lab and X-ray services also are available. Convenient Care is the best option for:

  • Prompt care for nonlife-threatening issues
  • Sprains, cuts, rashes
  • Cold/flu
  • Work injuries
  • Broken bones—as long as the bone has not come through the skin
  • Routine health issues
  • Patients who do not have a primary care physician
  • Patients who cannot get a timely appointment with their primary care physician

Lee Community Healthcare

Located in Cape Coral, Dunbar and North Fort Myers, the Lee Community Healthcare offices provide high quality, patient-centered primary care for those in our community who have limited access to care, no primary care provider, or have limited or no insurance. These offices are best for:

  • Adult patients who are uninsured or underinsured
  • Chronic illness management
  • Health maintenance
  • Immunizations
  • Screenings/tests
  • Preventive care
  • Minor injuries/complaints

Emergency Departments (EDs)

The EDs are open 24/7, and the most severe cases are treated first. The ED is the best option for care for:

  • Severe or life-threatening issues
  • Heart attack or stroke
  • Broken bones—if the bone is visible through the skin
  • Patients having trouble breathing
  • Minor emergencies when a patient does not have access to a primary care physician or walk-in care center

911: Medical Emergency

A medical emergency is an event that you reasonably believe threatens you or someone else’s life or limb in such a way that immediate medical care is required to prevent death or serious impairment of health. Examples of medical emergencies include severe pain, bad injury, a serious illness or a medical condition that is quickly getting much worse. To help you decide if you should call 911, answer these questions as best you can:

  • Does the condition threaten life or limb?
  • Could the condition worsen quickly on the way to the hospital?
  • If you move the victim, will it cause further injury?
  • Does the person need skills or equipment provided by paramedics or EMTs right away?
  • Would distance or traffic cause a delay in getting the person to the hospital?

If the answer is ‘yes’ to any of these questions, call 911. It is important to note that using an ambulance does not guarantee faster ED treatment because all patients are assessed and treated based on the severity of their condition. Hospitals are working hard every day to keep emergency and other important health care services available to the community. Appropriate use of these facilities can help protect those services today, tomorrow and into the future.


About Lee Health

Since the opening of the first hospital in 1916, Lee Health has been a health care leader in Southwest Florida, constantly evolving to meet the needs of the community. A non-profit, integrated health care services organization, Lee Health is committed to the well-being of every individual served, focused on healthy living and maintaining good health. Staffed by caring people, inspiring health, services are conveniently located throughout the community in four acute care hospitals, two specialty hospitals, outpatient centers, walk-in medical centers, primary care and specialty physician practices and other services across the continuum of care. Learn more at www.LeeHealth.org


Press contact information
Pat Dolce
Public Affairs Specialist
Phone: 239-343-4801
Cell: 239-989-2758
After Hours: 239-789-5786
Fax: 239-343-4802

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