New to Online Healthcare? Here's What You Need to Know For Your Appointment
Although it's been around for several years, the demand for telehealth services has recently exploded as we find ourselves adjusting to a new way of life.
More and more people are finding themselves unable, or unwilling, to go into their doctor's office or local health clinic, and we can't blame them.
Why risk catching the virus at your doctor's office, if there's a better way to get the medical care you need? Now, many people are trying virtual doctor appointments for the first time and aren't quite sure what to expect.
"What does a virtual appointment mean?" and "How does a telemedicine appointment work?" are common questions for those new to telehealth.
Here at AccoladeCare, we've been providing telehealth services for years, and we've asked Dr. Adonis Saremi M.D. what he'd like his patients to know in advance. So believe us when we say that we can provide you with the best advice to prepare for your first virtual appointment.
How Do I Prepare for a Telehealth Appointment?
We're glad you asked!
Coming prepared to your appointment helps you and the doctor make the most of your time together, and when your health is on the line this is a must.
Let's talk about how you should prepare for your telehealth appointment.
Make Sure You Have Booked Your Doctor's Appointment in the Right State
When you book your virtual doctor's appointment, make sure you take a moment to check that you have booked in the state that you are currently physically located in. Doctors are only able to practice medicine in the states where they are licensed. This means that if you try to book an appointment with a doctor who is not licensed in the state you are located in, then the doctor unfortunately won't be able to evaluate or treat you.
Remember to double-check that you have booked in the right state, and you should be all set for your virtual doctor's appointment!
Have the Right Tech
Without the right technology, a virtual appointment can be difficult or even impossible. Before your appointment, make sure you have everything you need, including:
- A strong internet connection or reliable cell service
- A functioning camera. Video visits are always preferred over phone calls, and some states require video.
- Test your audio and video ahead of time
- Download the AccoladeCare App. The benefits of the app include secure in-app video conferencing, seamless medical record integration, lab result tracking and referencing, and unlimited in-app messaging with our care team.
"Prior to your appointment, check your internet connection and make sure your video, microphone and speakers are functional."
Dr. Adonis Saremi, M.D.
Make Sure You Can Be Treated Online
Don't risk wasting your time for something that can't be handled with an online appointment. Online appointments are a great solution for most urgent and primary care health needs.
So, what can anonline doctor treat?
The most commonly treated conditions online include:
- Sinus infections
- Urinary tract infections
- Pink eye
- Bacterial infections
- Sore throat
- Cold and flu
- Thyroid disorders
- High blood pressure
- Mental health
- Skin conditions
- Erectile dysfunction
- Ear infections
Common online prescriptions our doctors can write are:
- Birth control
- Prescription refills
- Smoking cessation
If you're not sure if your condition can be treated online ask our support team by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
At AccoladeCare we only charge you if the doctor can help you, so if you accidentally book for something that can't be treated online, don't worry, you'll get your money back.
The doctor will simply refer you for lab testing just as your in-person doctor would. The AccoladeCare doctor can ensure they order you all the necessary lab tests and locate the closest lab to you. You'll go get tested and your results will be electronically sent back to the AccoladeCare doctor.
The doctor will then schedule a follow up appointment with you, to go over your results, make a diagnosis andprescribe a treatment plan.
What can telehealth doctors NOT do?
Telehealth is not a solution for emergencies. If you are experiencing an emergency situation, please call 911 or go to the nearest hospital immediately.
This includes: severe blood loss, cuts that require stitches, broken bones or injuries that require x-rays, allergic reaction resulting in throat tightening and difficulty breathing, and all rapidly worsening life threatening conditions.
Additionally you cannot get controlled substances like Xanax, Adderall and OxyContin prescribed online.
Be in a Quiet Space with No Distractions
To get the most out of your appointment, give your doctor your full attention and try to avoid distractions and loud noises.
Make sure you have good lighting to show your doctor visible symptoms (like a rash or the back of your throat).
"If you have a skin condition or rash, take a high quality photo with good lighting and upload it - photographs typically offer better resolution than video and can help your doctor make an accurate diagnosis."
Dr. Adonis Saremi M.D.
During your appointment, avoid distractions like:
- Tending to children
- Changing clothes (yeah, we're a little surprised we have to mention this too)
- Performing other activities, especially loud ones
Be on Time
At AccoladeCare, our doctors make it to your appointment on time.
If you're late you may not get enough time with the doctor, because they will need to leave in order to be on time to their next appointment.
We recommend you login to your account or mobile app 5-10 minutes before your appointment time to make sure you're ready at your start time.
Unlike in a regular office, the doctor will be waiting to see you! This is crazy, yes we know!
"Do your best to join your appointment on time by logging into your account 5 minutes in advance."
Dr. Adonis Saremi, M.D.