Health care at your fingertips with telemedicine

Uncontrolled high blood pressure is a leading cause of heart disease and stroke, according to the CDC. Since February is American Heart Month, I wanted to give you a few tips on how wireless devices can improve lives by reducing in-person trips to the doctor’s office, save money, and keep vital health and wellness data at your fingertips.

Whether you are self-tracking your health activities or need to have valuable health information available in an emergency, today’s mobile devices along with health and wellness apps can help monitor your health and be used in emergencies.

health app

Smartphones and health tracking

  • According to a recent U.S. Cellular survey 34 percent of smartphone users have used a phone to help lose weight or improve their health, of those, 66 percent have used an app to keep track of exercise or other fitness activities.
  • Smartphones can play a vital role in getting medical attention within one hour of the onset of cardiac symptoms, as recommended by the Cleveland Clinic.
  • You can store personal medical information on your smartphone that family or medical personnel can access during an emergency.

Telemedicine and its benefits

  • Telemedicine makes health care more efficient by enabling practitioners to evaluate, diagnose and treat patients remotely using technology made available through a reliable wireless network like the high speed/4G LTE network available at U.S. Cellular.
  • It’s easy to contact trained medical professionals from home or work.
  • It’s convenient for people who might have difficulties coming into a physician’s office because of their remote location, busy schedules, mobility problems or other challenges.
  • It offers people instant, real-time medical consultations.
  • It saves time and money.
  • Telemedicine is meant to enhance – not replace – in-person physician visits, which are still recommended for regular care, such as physical exams. Telemedicine is used to treat minor ailments like cold symptoms, which account for nearly a quarter of office visits to primary care doctors and should not be used in emergency situations.

A Pew Research Center survey found that one in three American adults have gone online to research a medical condition. Now, people can use their mobile devices to “virtually” connect to a doctor to discuss their health symptoms, ask questions and learn more about treatment options. These virtual MDs can also prescribe medicine.

I’ve actually used the Doctor on Demand app myself and found it to be quite useful for those times you don’t want to run all the way to a clinic, yet still need professional answers.

Before using telemedicine:

Ask your Primary Care Physician. Discuss your options with your primary care physician to get their recommendations and see if they already have a relationship with a telemedicine provider.

Check your insurance.  Determine whether your insurance provider covers telemedicine and if there are any specifications surrounding this coverage.

Do your research.  Third-party medical rating service websites like vitals.com and NCQA.org provide valuable research on various telemedicine practitioners and services.

vitals

So tell us…

Have you ever used telemedicine? Would you consider using an app to reach a real, live doctor?

 

 

 

Image credit: Jason Howie, Flickr

Thanks to U.S. Cellular for sponsoring this post.

 

Jesica H

My name is Jesica and I'm happy to 'meet' you! I'm just living life and loving every minute of it! I try to not let things hold me down or hold me back, I just live! Here at The Mommy Bunch, I offer solid advice on all things parenting, household, and living life as a working mom.

jesicaj1 has 1486 posts and counting.See all posts by jesicaj1

26 thoughts on “Health care at your fingertips with telemedicine

  • February 24, 2015 at 10:56 am
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    What a great option for people who can't get out of the house. This is wicked convenient. Reply
  • February 24, 2015 at 11:08 am
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    This is very interesting and certainly the wave of the future. It would come in handy to answer those little questions that you don't need a full visit for. Or to help you decide if you do need to come in or not. Reply
  • February 24, 2015 at 11:28 am
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    This is a great idea. I love the idea of getting medical advice without having to leave the house. Thanks for sharing this! Reply
  • February 24, 2015 at 12:02 pm
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    This is such a great idea. Going out is terrible when you're already feeling sick and horrible. Thanks! Reply
  • February 24, 2015 at 1:06 pm
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    This sounds really cool. I know there are many times I need to see the doctor but just can't get away, this would be so much easier. Reply
  • February 24, 2015 at 1:35 pm
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    That's really cool! I love that they accept insurance. Some of these doctor apps don't. Reply
  • February 24, 2015 at 3:57 pm
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    How cool is this app? I need to use something like this next time I take my son to the doctors! Reply
  • February 24, 2015 at 3:58 pm
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    I think this is a great idea. I would use it just to avoid the extra germs at the doctors office. Reply
  • February 24, 2015 at 6:52 pm
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    It's definitely important to take care of your health problems. I didn't know it was heart health month. :) Reply
  • February 24, 2015 at 7:49 pm
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    I've never heard of this before but because my hubby is dealing with uncontrolled high blood pressure, it's certainly something we need to look into. Reply
  • February 24, 2015 at 7:55 pm
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    that looks like an awesome app. I love the fact that they take insurance. I will have to check it out to see if mine is covered. very cool!! Reply
  • February 24, 2015 at 8:26 pm
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    Telemedicine is just too convenient. I think I could definitely see myself using technology to contact a doctor in the future. Reply
  • February 24, 2015 at 8:59 pm
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    I love the idea that even if you can't get into the Dr Visit, you can still get your medical questions answered. That would be such a great help to busy moms everywhere. Reply
  • February 24, 2015 at 9:29 pm
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    This is such a great idea! Sometimes, it is not worth dragging yourself and your children to the doctor’s office for a simple question. Reply
  • February 25, 2015 at 10:24 am
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    I could see myself using this for minor visits. I think it is super cool, and goes to show how we are advancing as a society. Reply
  • February 25, 2015 at 11:46 am
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    While I have never heard of this before, I would definitely use it. And, if satisfied, I would absolutely recommend it. Great idea! Reply
  • February 25, 2015 at 11:53 am
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    This is very convenient, especially for homebound people! Reply
  • April 14, 2015 at 7:45 pm
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    This looks like it could be such a helpful service. Sometimes it is difficult or just not convenient to get to the doctor. Reply

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