Telehealth: How You Can Connect with Doctors Without Leaving Your House
Next time you have joint pain or a suspected sinus infection, there’s no need to get out of your sweatpants. Telehealth is here to make care faster and more accessible for you.
Should you go to the emergency room for that deep cut? What if you need to get antibiotics for a bad sinus infection, but you’re too exhausted to leave the house? Normally, these kinds of questions would make people hesitate to seek medical treatment. However, with telehealth becoming more widespread, you can get care easier than ever.
Telehealth is any kind of medical service a patient can get without going to a location in person. For some patients, telehealth looks like having a video call with a nurse practitioner to ask about a cough. Other patients may call their pediatrician to ask about their toddler’s pink eye, while some may be staying at home with devices that monitor sleep patterns or brain activity and send the data remotely to a medical professional. Patients can also text, email, and exchange files from an online portal.
Whichever kind of virtual care you’re using, here are some common scenarios where telehealth is useful:
- Patients no longer have to drive to a physical facility. You can chat with your dermatologist over the phone on your lunch break.
- People with mobility issues and people who live in rural areas can get healthcare much easier.
- Caregivers no longer have to stress about finding someone to watch their kids or take care of their elderly parents while they leave for a doctor’s appointment.
- When flu season hits, you can ask your doctor a question without coming in contact with dozens of sick people in a waiting room.
With so many advantages, it’s easy to see why telehealth is becoming such a popular option for patients. No wonder the CDC found that in 2021, more than 37% of adults in the U.S. had used telehealth services in the previous 12 months!
Patients aren’t the only ones who see value in telehealth. Health care providers also see benefits. Because the patients aren’t present in person, facilities can cut down on many of their costs, including lighting, staffing, rental space, and other overhead expenses. At the same time physicians are cutting down facility costs, they can also increase their patient base and see more people than they would be able to in person. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Medicare services has expanded virtual health options and added more than 80 new approved services, so doctors can now treat even more people with telehealth services.
How can you take advantage of virtual health visits? Next time you’re having joint pain or are worried about a sinus infection, stay in your sweatpants and take advantage of telehealth. Select Health offers many telehealth benefits to patients with Intermountain Connect Care®. Our 24/7 service is available to connect you with providers, prescribe medications, and help answer questions so you can get care without ever leaving the house.
Related:The Right Care When You Need It