When you’re suffering a minor health condition, the last thing you want to do is get dressed and drag yourself into a stuffy doctor’s office. You don’t want to infect other people, and you certainly don’t want to expose yourself to even more germs. But in the past, that was our only option.
Finally, we have a solution for these situations. The healthcare field has evolved to allow phone consultations for many minor conditions. This option can be better for all of us, reducing the unnecessary spread of colds and other minor illnesses. Plus, it’s much more comfortable and convenient for you, the patient.
These appointments are now available in California, depending upon your provider and insurance plan provisions.
It’s important to remember that there will always be some situations in which an in-person visit is necessary. Phone appointments are best used for conditions such as:
- Colds or respiratory infections
- Follow-up appointments regarding previous treatment
- Other minor, non-emergency illnesses
Telephone consultations are not appropriate for:
- Possible broken bones or sprains
- Severe shortness of breath
- Chest pains
- Severe abdominal pain
- Psychiatric emergencies
- If urgent care is required, call 911 or go to the closest emergency room.
How it works. When you call for a phone consultation, you will be asked to confirm that you are at least 18 years old and that you have previously attended one face-to-face meeting with this provider. If so, a one-hour window will be scheduled for you, during which your doctor will call you back.
It’s really that simple! And the best part is, you won’t even have to change out of your pajamas. For more information on telephone appointments, call your primary care provider or your health insurance representative.