Did you know that the telemedicine market was valued at nearly $45 billion in 2019? This industry will reach a value of $65 by 2025 as more and more people become accustomed to talking with doctors online.
In the simplest terms, telemedicine means having doctor consultations over the internet. You just have to find a certified telemedicine doctor and set up a meeting online. This form of treating patients offers numerous benefits, and it is accessible to anyone who has an internet connection.
Keep reading to learn more about telehealth and how telemedicine apps can help you handle your illness or recover from an addiction.
Make Sure That You Have a Stable Internet Connection
As mentioned earlier, telemedicine takes place solely over the internet. All consultations and doctors meetings are similar to those done in-person, just that you sit in front of your computer. A typical consultation lasts about 1 hour.
These online consultations are done as video conferences. You can see your doctor and the doctor can see you. Since video data is sent over the internet, your connection should be fast and reliable. Try to upgrade your internet connectivity if necessary, so that you can get the most out of your consultation.
Having a decent internet connection is important. You don’t want your online consultation to be interrupted by poor internet connectivity, right? Keep in mind that these doctors have other patients to treat, so it might take a while until you can reschedule your appointment.
Familiarize Yourself With the Telemedicine Jargon
Most people are not familiar with different types of terms used online. Some of these terms will apply when taking advantage of telemedicine. Since you’re talking with your doctor over the internet, you should know basic terminology such as bandwidth, authentication, color checker chart, depth of field, continuous video conference presence, etc.
Luckily, all this information can be easily found online. You should take some time to learn the basic terms before setting an appointment with your doctor. Your doctor can also offer you basic support if you’re not very familiar with internet terminology.
Decide if You Want a Subscription Service or a One-Time Consultation
The beauty of telemedicine is that you can receive customized health care by tapping your screen a few times. Whether you have the flu or want help to get over your addiction, there are numerous medical services provided through the telemedicine industry.
You just have to decide how you want to take advantage of these services. Many people go for a one-time consultation. This means that you pay a set fee, talk to a certified doctor, and get tailored medical services.
If you need regular treatment or periodic check-ups with your doctor, you might want to go for a subscription service. By doing so, you pay a certain fee monthly or annually. You get access to multiple online consultations with your favorite doctors.
A subscription service is more suitable for people who have chronic diseases or need complex medical treatment. You can communicate with your doctor regularly and set up consultations via your phone or computer at convenient times.
Use Different Types of Telemedicine Apps
You can set up an online consultation and talk to your doctor from your computer. However, you can also use your mobile device, particularly if you own an Apple phone. There are numerous apps in the App Store that can be used by those who want to take advantage of telemedicine.
The process is very simple. You just download the app, create an account in just one minute, and get in touch with a healthcare professional. You will have to answer a few basic questions regarding your health. This will help doctors provide you the correct medical service over the internet.
As mentioned earlier, there are many telehealth apps such as MDLIVE, Lemonaid, Spruce, Amwell, etc. All of them have unique features, services, and prices. Try a few apps to see which one fits your needs the best.
One of the biggest advantages of telemedicine apps is convenience and easy-to-use. You basically have a virtual doctor in your pocket wherever you go. Whether it’s about a medical emergency or a routine check-up, you just log in and talk to your doctor.
Telemedicine apps are continuously updated too. You can talk with an expert if you have questions about payments and many doctors are usually available 24/7, so someone is going to take care of you no matter where you live.
Contact Popular Telemedicine Companies
You might be happy to find out that many telemedicine companies have websites for patients to explore. Teladoc or MeMD are excellent examples in this case. You just visit these websites, create an account, and/or download their mobile app.
Once you are registered on these websites, you get access to a broad range of medical services. For example, you can benefit from urgent care services. These are charged higher than regular services, but they can save you a great deal of time and headaches when you need them the most.
In some cases, you can also arrange to have prescriptions sent to your local pharmacies. This will help you get in possession of the right drugs at the right time. If you’re struggling to recover from substance abuse, using such telemedicine services can make the difference between recovery and relapse.
Check to See if Your Insurance Covers Telemedicine Services
The telemedicine industry is slowly getting more and more popular among patients. That’s why you shouldn’t be surprised to find out that many insurance companies don’t cover such services. However, this is changing at a rapid pace.
Certain large insurance companies are able to cover basic telemedicine consultations and services. You just have to check with your provider and your online doctor. You can do this by contacting a healthcare professional within the telemedicine app or using their website.
Make sure that you check with your insurance agency too and see if they cover one-time consultations as well as subscription services. If your doctor’s appointment is not covered now, don’t despair. It will probably be covered in the upcoming months as telemedicine is getting more and more popular.
Make Sure That You Check Out Your Online Doctor’s Credentials
As a rule of thumb, you should only collaborate with trustworthy telemedicine companies. You should also get into the habit of checking your doctor’s credentials. This will help you avoid scams, and it will protect your health.
For example, if you have decided upon a doctor, type his/her name on this website – certificationmatters.org. This is a website that checks a doctor’s reputation based on his/her name and location.
You can also contact the doctor directly and ask for an email with a copy of his/her credentials. If you still want to find out more information about your doctor, then you can use the internet to gather additional data.
For example, many patients write reviews on websites such as WebMD, Facebook, Google Reviews, Google My Business, etc. You can even check on the Better Business Bureau website and see what past clients have to say about your preferred doctor.
Take your time to read some of these testimonials. Go for the genuine ones provided by real patients, not sponsored reviews. If tens of patients agree that a doctor is trustworthy, you should probably collaborate with him/her too.
Checking the reputation of a healthcare professional is paramount before taking advantage of telemedicine. Trustworthy doctors are always happy to showcase their credentials. Those who question your curiosity might have something to hide, so stay away from them.
Have a Copy of Your Medical History Handy
Ideally, you should have access to your medical records and history before setting up a telemedicine session. That’s because your doctor might ask you about past health problems, what type of drugs you take now or have taken in the past, etc.
If you’re a recovering addict, your doctor might also ask about your experience and journey to an addiction-free life. Having your medical records with you during the online appointment can make a big difference. This will help you get the most out of your telemedicine session.
Keep in mind that you can also ask questions, not only provide answers to those asked by your doctor. A telemedicine session is almost identical to a physical one, so feel free to ask as many questions you might have. That’s how you build a trustworthy relationship with your doctor.
Now You Know How to Find a Telemedicine Doctor
Telehealth services offer a plethora of advantages to patients all over the country. You don’t have to travel hundreds of miles to talk with your favorite telemedicine doctor anymore. You can simply set up an online appointment and receive some of the best medical care available.
If you want help to stay sober or recover easier from your addiction, then make sure that you contact us today. We provide tailored medical care to recovering addicts and we currently accept all private insurances, so everyone gets a chance to live a better life.