It is 7:00 pm on Friday. You’ve cleaned up dinner after a tiresome day at work, and all you want to do is plop down on the sofa and consume several episodes of your latest TV obsession. But you can’t. Your nine-year-old has been complaining of an earache since she got home from school. And now her eyelids are filled with tears. You need medical care — tonight. Thanks to patient demands for convenience and advances in technology, you have options besides the ER. Neighborhood urgent care clinics offer high-quality care, or you could try telemedicine. Telemedicine uses your computer or smartphone to connect you with a physician or other healthcare professional in real-time to address non-life-threatening situations — and patients love it.
If you haven’t tried your plan’s telemedicine benefit, give it a try with these quick tips:
- Before your appointment, check your webcam, microphone, and volume settings to make sure everything is working properly. Set your camera at eye-level to make it easy for the doctor to see you.
- Find a quiet place. You want to make the most out of your time with the doctor. Minimize distractions and interruptions by moving to a calm, well-lit spot in your home
- Jot down a few notes. Before your appointment, make sure to write down anything you want to share with the doctor. If the appointment is for your child, have your child with you when the session begins.
Urgent care centers and telemedicine are becoming popular, convenient, and smart ways to access qualified healthcare professionals. Check to see if your plan offers these benefits, and give one of them a try the next time you or a loved one needs to see a doctor — even when it’s late on a Friday night.
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