Best Telehealth Services: Compare Your Options
Those who are unable to visit a doctor but need medical care will greatly benefit from telehealth services. For instance, children in school may need telemedicine when a school nurse may not have the ability to properly diagnose a child. Busy professionals who cannot take half a day from work to wait in a clinic will also be happy to speak with a physician via telehealth when they are ill.
The biggest benefits of telehealth services include greater access to care, better patient satisfaction, and lower healthcare costs. The average costs for telehealth services for people without insurance is around $79 per visit. In fact, some services can be as little as $20 per visit. This can be compared to the average cost of a doctor's visit at a clinic, which is as high as $149.
There are specific medical devices that patients will need to take part in telemedicine such as mobile apps where they can upload data or blood glucose readings for their medical team to track, according to the Mayo Clinic.
Medical Devices for Telemedicine Services
Blood pressure or lung function devices may also be used as well as wearable devices that track heart rate, gait, physical activity, or sleep patterns. Another potential telehealth device is the patient portal where patients can message their doctor, view their test results, make appointments, or request drug refills.
If you want to find telehealth services, you should ask your primary care doctor and nearby hospitals what they may offer in terms of remote healthcare. Some of the best telehealth services include MD Live, Live Health, and Lemonaid.
- MD Live: The benefits of MD Live include providing patients with virtual doctor visits with no copay for those with insurance as well as second opinions on diagnostics or treatments, behavioral health counseling, and pharmacy services. The disadvantages of MD Live include the lack of email or chat support options as well as payment being required before the virtual appointment.
- Live Health: Live Health benefits include being more affordable and taking much less time to receive a diagnosis and a prescription than going to urgent care or waiting for a primary care appointment. Live Health disadvantages are that these doctors cannot handle medical emergencies and the system may erroneously double-book appointments.
- Lemonaid: The Lemonaid telemedicine service has the advantage of delivering medicine straight to your door after giving you a proper diagnosis. However, some of the disadvantages of Lemonaid are a very time-consuming sign-up process, difficult to use platform, high price, and inferior service speed.
Speak to your primary care doctor to learn about whether telemedicine is right for you. When you're strapped for time and are feeling under the weather, telehealth platforms may be the best choice.