COVID-19 brought on a number of changes globally – a shift to telemedicine is one of them.
Even though we are slowly resuming our normal routines, telemedicine isn’t going anywhere. Not only is it a safe way to get medical assistance and prescriptions, but it’s convenient too.
If you’ve just scheduled your first telehealth appointment, there are a few things you should know.
Preparing for Your First Virtual Doctor’s Appointment
Here are a few tips to ensure you make the most of your time with your healthcare professional.
Get Your Tech Ready
Naturally, to meet with a doctor virtually, you need the right tech. Before you schedule an appointment, ensure your internet connection is strong and that you have a device with a camera. Test out your audio and video ahead of time to make sure everything is working as it should. Lastly, download an app such as Air Doctor to connect with a medical professional near you. It’s also best to download and set up the app ahead of time.
Have Realistic Expectations
As you can imagine, virtual doctor’s appointments have limitations. For one, a physical examination isn’t an easy task. Your doctor will need to go on what they can see on video. It’s also next to impossible to diagnose any unusual symptoms or pain over video. It’s important to have realistic expectations about what is possible during a virtual appointment.
Decide Whether You Can Be Treated Online
Not all medical concerns can be treated online. Some of the most commonly treated problems include depression, UTIs, sinus infections, skin conditions, pink eye, colds and flu, ear infections and bacterial infections. If you have a vague idea of what may be wrong, a doctor can probably assist you with a diagnosis and prescription online.
Unfortunately, if you have no idea what could be wrong, it might be best to see a doctor in person. If you simply require a new prescription for existing medication, a virtual doctor’s appointment is ideal.
Most virtual appointments are only about 15 minutes, so it’s important to come prepared to get the most out of your session. A doctor can only assist you with one or two concerns per session, so if you have multiple concerns, you may need to book a second appointment.
15 minutes before your appointment, find a well-lit, quiet area to sit. Your doctor needs to be able to see and hear you clearly. If there are too many people around you or the lighting is poor, a proper diagnosis can’t be made. You should absolutely not be driving during your virtual appointment!
If you’re currently taking specific medication, have it on hand during your appointment. Not only will this help your doctor with their analysis, but it prevents them from prescribing medication that will negatively interact with existing medication. Your doctor can also advise you on whether you’re currently on the correct dosage for your concerns.
As you prepare for your first virtual doctor’s appointment, remember to keep an open mind. This won’t be quite like what you’re used to, but you can still get the assistance you need.
Find a medical practitioner near you using the Air Doctor web app.