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Finding your way to the doctor can be a difficult thing nowadays. It seems to be harder than ever to get time off from work, and many doctors’ offices are backed up and it takes weeks to get an appointment. But, did you know you can get medical advice on the internet? TechVise has already discussed one such service before by the name of Doctor Spring, but we recently decided to dive in and check out how many more online medical services are there which anyone in the world can use. So here are a few more of the same.
How Online Medical Services Work
Online medical services are websites that offer consultation to patients. You signup with them and ask a question regarding illness. Usually these services have General Physicians as well as specialists that are all certified and qualified enough. There are however somethings you need to look out for such as the refund policy in the case that you are not happy with the consultation. You should also check out their qualification and feedback rating if the service allows. One very important thing to check before you enter your credit card details is the response time. Make sure the response time is less and there is a way to get hold of the doctor via other means. If the acclaimed response time is 8 to 12 hours, then that is not good, why? Because the response time for any medical treatment should be 1-5 hours and nothing more. If they are saying 8 hours, chances are that they’ll get back after 16 long hours.
Now for the list of online medical services…
If you are just looking for something quick, such as a medical inquiry or a prescription refill, then MeMD may be the perfect service for you. It is relatively inexpensive, just $49.95 for a consultation. The way it works is pretty simple. You will create an account, pay for the consultation, and you will have a live webcam conversation with a certified doctor or nurse practitioner. The wait times vary, but can be a bit on the long side. The refund policy is also a little vague, but it seems like you can get one if you aren’t entirely satisfied with the service. If you are looking for some quick medical information or a prescription refill (MeMD offers a variety of medicines, but it cannot give a prescription for everything), then MeMD will be great for you.
MDLIVE is a very similar service to MeMD, though it seems to be a bit more comprehensive in some cases. For one, you can actually choose a provider to talk to and see when they are available to talk. MDLIVE also has similar prescription options as MeMD. Doctors can give you an e-prescription that can be picked up at your local pharmacy. The cost is also generally the same: $49. The refund policy is shaky, but if you have a legitimate complaint you could easily get your money back. If you are looking for something effective and simple, MDLIVE is one of the best online medical services available.
NeedStreet is an awesome service because it allows you to stay connected to your actual doctor at all times. On the patient end, with the app Continuous Care, you will have access to all of your medical records, and you can even update your health and symptoms within the app. Communicating with your doctor’s Virtual Practice app, you can have virtual follow-up appointments as well as have video consultations directly from the app. Best of all, this service is totally free.
Teladoc works in a similar way to MeMD and MDLIVE. Users create an account, talk to doctors, and get e-prescriptions. There are a few differences though. Unlike MDLIVE, you cannot choose you doctor on Teladoc. Teladoc is also only available for patients in the U.S. So if you live in another country or are traveling internationally, you are out of luck. What makes Teladoc nice, though, is its payment options. You can pay $49 per consultation if you like, or you can sign up for an individual account that only costs $29.99 a year, or $49.99 a year for family accounts. If you live in the States and are looking for something affordable and simple, then Teladoc may be the best option for you.
Those are just a few of the online medical services available. If you are interested in one, the best thing to do is make sure any medical service you use is certified and offers an agreeable refund policy. These online medical services also cannot fully replace annual checkups, but they are a nice substitute for minor medical issues or a second opinion.
Have you used any online medical service that has something different to offer or is simply too reliable, then please share the name and your experience.