PHOENIX, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) - A Valley school teacher by the name of Brian Sears wrote to 3 On Your Side complaining about an emergency room mix-up.

He took his daughter to a Dignity Health emergency room for an earache thinking it was an urgent care facility. "She told me that it really hurt and that she needed some medicine," Sears told 3 On Your Side.

[WATCH: Confusing an urgent care clinic with an emergency room can be a costly mistake]

Sears says once he realized he was at an ER, he immediately left before his daughter was ever seen and instead went down the street to an Urgent Care facility where the bill was a fraction of the cost.

This is a common complaint to 3 On Your Side, where consumers confuse a "free standing" emergency room with an urgent care facility because they look identical.

Even Google and Siri are mixing the two up and sending consumers to a free-standing ER instead of Urgent Care. That's exactly what happened Sears.

Knowing the difference before you walk in can have significant financial consequences.


Gary Harper's 3 On Your Side reports air weeknights on 3TV News at 9.


Copyright 2019 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.



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