This past week, my family made a much anticipated trip to Florida. Like many people that make the Disney World journey – our trip was put through crowd calendars, time optimizers, planning strategy sessions, and probably hundreds of hours of YouTube research before it was even booked. It was a once in a lifetime trip, and the expectations were high. It was perfect! But then I got sick. Really sick. And my world of perfection, and planning crumbled around me. Maybe yours is crumbling around you right now? Maybe… that’s why you’re reading this? If so – take heart. It’s going to be okay. You can learn from my mistakes. Here’s a handy guide to getting to doctors in Disney world.
First off – there are first aid areas in every area of Disney World. So if you just twisted your ankle, or got a bloody nose – there are nurses you can see right away. Just ask any Cast Member for help to the First Aid Office. But if your ailments are less easy to pinpoint like mine, you may need to employ a few other strategies…
You can get a FREE shuttle to an Urgent Care Clinic from Disney World. First, you will need to find that First Aid Office I talked about earlier. From there, the First Aid station can call a Centra Care Walk-In Urgent Care office. They are affiliated with Florida Hospital in Lake Buena Vista. Centra Care locations are open weekdays 8 a.m. – midnight and on weekends from 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. Their shuttle picks you up where you are – and drops you at it’s Centra Care locations.
Advice on using the shuttle. While I was visiting I started to suspect I had the flu and called the Centra office. This was before I knew there was a shuttle. The Centra office said it was about an hour wait. When I got there 20 minutes later, I was told there was a 2 hour wait. After an hour of waiting … I was told it would be an additional 3+ hours of waiting to be seen, maybe more. I later found out there are two Centra offices you can be shuttled to (Lake Buena Vista or Orange). I’d recommend finding out if one has a much longer wait than the other, and trying to ask about going to the less busy location.
(Me about 3 hours into my Centra Clinic Adventure. There was a bit of crying involved. lol. In my defense -I was really not feeling great!)
In the end – I ended up taking the shuttle back to the Park I was originally visiting, without ever being seen. But not before I ended up missing the whole day at the park with my family. So next time, I would definitely find out the wait time ahead. Or try another avenue. More on that below.
Centra Care also offers Physician Room Service – where a doctor will come directly to your resort room. When I called mid-morning the doctor was already booked through 10pm that night. So if this route sounds like something you’d like to do, call as early in the day as you can to secure a visit. Also, the doctor I spoke to (who was SO nice!) let me know that they do not contract with insurance. So be prepared to pay out of pocket. The fee I was quoted, was between $200- $299 for a visit, depending on the time the visit was scheduled. Evenings are higher priced.
Centra Care’s phone number for the Lake Buena Vista location is 407-934-2273. Centra Care South Orange’s phone number is (407) 203-0656.
You can also visit them on-line at www.centracare.org.
If you have a doctor at home, they can call in a prescription for you. If you have a doctor at home willing to send you a prescription, this may be your easiest option. And while you can absolutely find pharmacies nearby all the Disney World Parks – there is also a pharmacy that delivers. And if you don’t have a car with you (like us) that could be very helpful!
Tourist Prescription Service & Delivery – According to their literature, Turner Drugs serves all WDW & area attractions, Resorts, and Hotels.
You can order Online: www.TurnerDrug.com or call them at (407)828-8125. This is the pamphlet I was given at the Disney World Park First Aid Office.
See an Online/App Doctor. There are lot’s of E-Doctor options available via website or phone apps. And they can call in prescriptions when needed, and even look in your throat via webcam! Two services that offer online doctors are Doctors on Demand and AmWell.
Go to the nearby CVS Store – Minute Clinic. Nurse practitioners on staff can diagnose and write simple prescriptions, and you can fill them onsite. This option is most helpful if you have a car for transportation. But you could also use a ride share service. Just be sure to check the hours before going. You can find out more here: http://www.minuteclinic.com/
Just need simple over the Counter Meds? You’re in luck. Most of the gift shops in Walt Disney World Parks & Resorts carry OTC medicines. You may not see them, but if you ask a Cast Member, they will happily direct you to what they have.
I hope this guide gives you some helpful resources. If you unfortunately find yourself needing a doctor at Walt Disney World, just know there are many options available. My advice is to get help as soon as you realize you need it – that way you can get back to enjoying your family and making memories!