Online Scheduling Options for ER Visits Allow for Flexibility and Comfort

When you are suffering from a fever, a runny nose, body aches, or non-stop sneezing or coughing, there is no place like home. However, sometimes seeking health care is necessary to feel better. To minimize the amount of time you would wait in the waiting room at their emergency room (ER), McLaren offers an online check-in option, so you can save your spot in line and wait from the comfort of your home.

 “I compare our online check-in to the use of an urgent care or your primary care when you can’t get in,” said Dr. Gardner, DO, emergency department medical director at McLaren Greater Lansing. “It’s a great option for minor cases like cold, cough, and sinus concerns, or if you twisted your ankle or knee.”

 If you are experiencing chest pain, shortness of breath, severe belly pain, severe headaches, uncontrolled vomiting, bleeding during pregnancy, or a major fall or other trauma, you should go directly to the emergency room to be evaluated by a medical professional.

 “For less emergent cases, check-in is a valuable tool because you can sign up to receive text alerts. If you are waiting at home and we have multiple people come in with medical emergencies, we can text you to let you know that your arrival time has changed,” said Dr. Gardner “Our patients who are experiencing a medical emergency will be seen first.”

 The scheduling system offers patients more control over their healthcare encounters by supporting a comfortable, more convenient waiting experience. This also helps mitigate the spread of viruses in the ER and congestion in the waiting area.

“We have been seeing patients coming in with your expected winter-time viruses such as COVID, influenza, and RSV,” said Dr. Gardner. “However, with the recent cold weather, we have also seen patients coming in with hip, wrist, and rib fractures from slips and falls, exacerbation of pulmonary diseases from the cold temperatures, and an increase of heart attacks from shoveling and other increased physical activity.”

If you need care, but it’s not an emergency, urgent care may be the right option for you. In 2022, McLaren Greater Lansing and Lansing Urgent Care signed an affiliation agreement, which assists patients seeking medical assistance in finding the appropriate level of care through cross-promotion of wait times at Lansing Urgent Care and McLaren, along with more streamlined follow-up care. The integration with diagnostics, lab, and imaging results also provides more streamlined and timely access for patients needing ongoing care. Eventually, the affiliation will provide McLaren and Lansing Urgent Care patients with improved care coordination through improved access to medical records and post-patient care.

To utilize online check-in, patients can visit and register for the treatment time that best fits their schedule. They immediately receive an email confirmation. If at any time a patient’s spot in line needs to be adjusted due to unforeseen circumstances, they are notified via text messages regarding real-time wait times.

Saving a spot in line is easy. Visit