When to Get Emergency Care

Urgent Care After Hours

Urgent care is NOT emergency care. You should use urgent care when you have an injury or illness that is not life threatening but needs to be treated within 48 hours. Use urgent care when you cannot wait for an appointment with your doctor. Only go to the ER if your provider tells you to or if you have a life-threatening emergency.

When you need urgent care, follow these steps:

  1. Call your PCP. The name and phone number are on your Nebraska Total Care member ID card. An after-hours number is listed. Your doctor may help you and give you directions over the phone.
  2. If you cannot reach your PCP, call our 24/7 Nurse Advice Line. The number is 1-844-385-2192, TTY: 1-844-307-0342, Relay 711. You will talk to a nurse. Have your Nebraska Total Care member ID card with you. They will ask you for your number. The nurse will help you over the phone. If you need to see a doctor they will help you find care.
  3. If you have a mental illness or addiction crisis, do not wait to get help. Call our 24/7 Nurse Advice Line at 1-844-385-2192, TTY: 1-844-307-0342, Relay 711. Nebraska Total Care also has a crisis line that is free to you. That number is 1-844-677-7553. People at either number can help you. They can help with depression, substance use and other behavioral health needs.
  4. If your provider tells you to go to the nearest emergency room go right away. Take your Nebraska Total Care member ID card and your Nebraska Medicaid ID card. 

Emergency Care

Emergency care is always covered by Nebraska Total Care in the United States. An emergency is when not getting medical attention could risk your health. Or the health of your unborn child. An emergency can include an accident, injury or sudden illness.

Go to the emergency room for:

  • Broken bone(s)
  • Gun or knife wound(s)
  • Bleeding that will not stop
  • You are pregnant and in labor and/or bleeding
  • Severe chest pain or heart attack
  • Drug overdose
  • Poisoning
  • Bad burn(s)
  • Shock (you may sweat, feel thirsty or dizzy or have pale skin)
  • Convulsions or seizures
  • Trouble breathing
  • Suddenly unable to see, move or speak 

Do NOT go to the emergency room for:

  • Flu, cold, sore throat or earache
  • A sprain or strain
  • A cut or scrape that does not need stitches
  • To get more medicine or have a prescription refilled
  • Diaper rash

Emergency rooms are for emergencies. If you can, call your PCP first. If your condition is severe, call 911 or go to the nearest hospital. You do not need approval. If you are not sure if it is an emergency, call your doctor. Your doctor will tell you what to do. If your doctor’s office is closed there should be a message telling you how to get help.

You can also call our 24/7 Nurse Advice Line. The number is 1-844-385-2192, TTY: 1-844-307-0342, Relay 711.

You can go to any hospital emergency room. It can be a hospital that is not in the Nebraska Total Care network. Show the provider your Nebraska Total Care member ID card and your Nebraska Medicaid ID card. Providers outside of our network will need help from us right away so that they can get paid. If they do not complete tasks within 30 days you may be responsible for paying for service.

Call your PCP and Nebraska Total Care after you go to the emergency room. Call within 48 hours of your emergency. This help us make sure you get the follow up care you need. The phone number is 1-844-385-2192, TTY: 1-844-307-0342, Relay 711.