In this day and age, we are all experiencing an increase in deductibles and out- of-pocket costs when it comes to our health insurance. It seems no matter what the government does to try to fix the problem, the problem continues to get worse. In fact, millions of Americans, although insured, delay care because they cannot afford their out-of-pocket costs.
New technologies are arising to meet the needs of those who have been unable to afford to pay for care due to high deductibles and large copayments. Tele-Medicine is beginning to gain a foothold in the marketplace as an alternative way to save money on care for non life threatening illnesses, urgent care and prescriptions. The advantages of Tele-Medicine applications include:
- Accessibility: 24 X 7 Access to doctors and other certified, insured and credentialed health care professionals
- Convenience: Call from home, office or while traveling, and receive treatment for common diseases without spending a fortune at an urgent care facility. Many health insurance companies in the individual and family markets have cancelled their nationwide PPO plans, leaving you without coverage for minor illnesses while travelling. A tele-doc app can save you money, should you come down with a minor infection while on vacation.
- Low-Cost: Save hundreds or even thousands yearly by addressing most health issues over the phone; $0 copay, low monthly fee.
- Value: Many tele-medicine Apps provide ways to compare costs of prescriptions and procedures at various different pharmacies and health care facilities, respectively. Prescription costs can vary greatly from one pharmacy to another. A well thought out app can empower consumers to make the most of their health care dollars or health savings accounts (HSAs).
- Proactive: Some Tele-Medicine apps provide savings alerts, to let you know, for example, when a current prescription price has changed.
- Educational: Healthy lifestyle and wellness tips, videos and articles are often a part of the service.
Common illnesses that can be treated via Tele-Medicine include:
- Acute bronchitis
- Ear Aches
- Pink Eye
- Sore throat
- Strep throat
- Upper respiratory infections
- Urinary Tract Infections