Call a Doctor Online and Get Help Fast
In the not-too-distant past, we would call a doctor when we got sick, schedule an appointment, and wait hours, if not days, to be seen. No matter how horrible we might be feeling, we would have to somehow drag ourselves out of bed and make the long trek to the doctor’s office. Dreading the prospect, we might even choose to put off getting care for as long as possible. Now, there is a better option. With the advent of telemedicine, help is available quickly, online. Begin and end your call to the doctor with a virtual consultation and get the help you need fast, often in less than 20 minutes.
What is ‘Telemedicine?’
Telemedicine, as defined by the World Health Organization, means “healing from a distance.” It means getting medical care by phone or online, usually through a videoconferencing service like Skype or FaceTime. After you make the call, a doctor will connect with you, listen to your concerns, make a diagnosis, and prescribe medication if it is deemed appropriate. Telemedicine falls under the ‘telehealth’ category, which is not technically a service but refers to all health-related electronic information and communications (for example, scheduling and continuing doctor training).
We have all suffered the impacts of COVID-19, but one positive innovation to come from it is the advancement of telemedicine. These days, many people avoid seeing a doctor because they are afraid of exposure. Telemedicine solves the problem by taking doctor visits into the virtual world. After making an online call, a doctor will “see” you in short order from the safety and comfort of your own home. With online visits, you don’t have to worry about getting another illness while you’re being treated for your current one. Virtual visits also provide a considerable benefit for people living in rural or remote areas where medical help can be far away. Telemedicine is quickly becoming the new standard of care for many common ailments.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I Call a Doctor Online for Any Health Problem?
The short answer is no, but an online doctor visit is appropriate for a broad range of medical needs. Many non-life-threatening illnesses as well as some chronic conditions are managed just as effectively online as in person. As the field of telemedicine grows, so does its usefulness and application in a variety of circumstances. Many of the conditions that you would usually call a doctor to treat in a traditional office can now be handled online in less time and with less hassle.
The following are just a few of the common ailments regularly diagnosed and treated online:
Colds and flu; sinus and respiratory Infections; general aches and pains; urinary tract infections; nausea and vomiting; fever and diarrhea; pinkeye (conjunctivitis); allergies and asthma; dermatopathological conditions; erectile dysfunction
In addition to acute illnesses, certain chronic conditions, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, or cancer, may be monitored and managed online. If you are living with a chronic disease, you may need to see the doctor regularly. Keeping up with frequent visits through telemedicine is a fast and convenient option. There is no longer any reason to delay calling a doctor when you experience a new symptom or have a question about your condition. Online doctors can also assist with any necessary lifestyle changes, such as weight loss or smoking cessation.
If you decide to call a doctor and require a specialist, there are many choices available online. Pediatricians, internists, psychiatrists, and dermatologists are just some of the specialists who practice online and do virtual visits. Licensed mental health counselors will provide therapy virtually. Many mental health conditions are effectively managed online.
It is important to note that while telemedicine treats many health conditions; it is not appropriate in all cases. Telemedicine is not equipped to deal with serious medical emergencies. If you are experiencing anything potentially life-threatening or if you have any doubt about the severity of your situation, do not hesitate to call 911. Additionally, if you suspect a broken bone or need a blood test, an in-person visit would be necessary.
While telemedicine will not entirely replace the traditional office visit, it is fast becoming a popular option among patients and medical practices alike. People are taking better care of their health because it is so convenient to do so. The ease of accessing quality care through videoconference or a simple phone call is truly mind-blowing. Thanks to COVID-19, the services and benefits of telemedicine continue to grow. It is quickly becoming the new standard of care for an increasingly broad range of health conditions.
What does it Cost to Call a Doctor Online?
Less than you might think, even without insurance. If you do have health insurance, your visit might be covered, but you should call your provider directly to be sure. Insurers are recognizing the value telemedicine offers in terms of cost and efficiency. As a result, more and more insurance companies are jumping on the telemedicine bandwagon. At this time, the five biggest insurers—Humana, Cigna, Aetna, United Healthcare, and Blue Cross/Blue Shield—now offer at least some coverage for virtual doctor visits, depending on the plan you’ve selected. Medicare may reimburse you.
But even if your insurer doesn’t cover telehealth visits, the cost is often quite reasonable. A 2017 Health Affairs study estimated the average cost of an in-person visit, without insurance, at $146. A virtual visit can cost you less than half as much, depending on your selected specialist and whether you have insurance. If you choose a reputable provider such as Telegra MD, a one-time visit for a common illness typically costs $49, or you can choose to become a member for as little as $10 a month.
Considering that telemedicine makes it possible to call a doctor anywhere, anytime, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, and get seen with a minimum wait time, the costs seem more than worth it.
With telemedicine at your fingertips, it doesn’t make sense anymore to put off seeing a doctor because of concerns about work or other obligations. Taking good care of your health and that of your family is non-negotiable. Call a doctor online whenever it fits into your schedule and be seen in as little as 20 minutes.
Is it Safe to Call a Doctor Online?
An online doctor visit sounds great when it comes to convenience and affordability, but what about quality of care? Of course, when you call a doctor, you want to be sure you are dealing with a legitimate medical professional. Engaging with board-certified physicians who are licensed to prescribe in your state is an absolute must. If you use a reputable telemedicine provider such as Telegra MD, you can rest assured you are dealing with professionals. All the doctors and specialists available at Telegra MD are background-checked and vetted to ensure they are board-certified and properly licensed.
Data privacy is another understandable concern. Be aware that telemedicine providers are subject to the same legal requirements around data privacy as an in-person office. If you choose to call a doctor online, expect your information to be handled as securely as it would in any other setting. HIPAA-compliant platforms ensure that data remains private. Telemedicine providers should use encrypted patient portals to communicate results and share any sensitive information with the patient.
Ready to Call a Doctor? Follow these 3 Steps to Arrange an Online Visit:
- All you need to get started is an internet connection, a computer, a phone, or a laptop. Be sure to reach out to a reputable telemedicine provider such as Telegra MD.
- Register on the site. Choose a provider from a broad list of specialists and schedule your visit at a convenient time. Through Telegra MD you can arrange to see a family practitioner, pediatrician, internist, dermatologist, or psychiatrist, among others.
- When the doctor is ready to see you, proceed as you would during a regular office visit. Describe your symptoms and prepare to show the doctor any physical manifestations of your illness (such as a rash or gooey eye). Have your pharmacy’s address and phone number handy because the doctor will need that information if he or she determines that medication is necessary. Prescriptions are electronically transmitted to your pharmacy of choice and all physicians on Telegra MD are vetted to ensure they are licensed to prescribe in your state.
That’s it! It’s all so easy. And when you call a doctor, don’t forget to choose a reputable provider such as Telegra MD, where board-certified physicians are available 24/7, 365 days a year—even on holidays. Costs vary depending on your insurance coverage and the type of doctor you need to see. Telegra MD offers a membership option for only $10 a month. You can be sure your privacy is protected because Telegra MD operates on a HIPAA-compliant platform.