The future is now and it is in the form of video-conferencing with a doctor, courtesy of LiveHealth Online.
The computer doctor is perfect for this family
One recent morning I woke up with my left eye sealed shut. “Oh no,” I thought. “Pink eye.”
Cue the bells of doom. I had a meeting with a group of moms that morning, and then after that a meeting at my kids’ school, not to mention I am the matriarch of this household and thus I touch all of the things and the people and what if I was sending them out into the world as pink eye carriers? Yes, I worried for the rest of my community as well as my own self. I am altruistic that way. Also I didn’t want everyone to be mad that I infected the school with pinkeye.
I considered my options. Call my doctor and try to get in ASAP, no guarantee there. Weasel my way into the pediatrician’s office, which I’ve always considered trying but never had the guts. Use the clinic at the local drugstore. Assume it was pinkeye and just cancel everything.
I had been learning about LiveHealth Online, a new app that offers a safe, fast and easy way for people to talk face to face with a doctor. You can get a diagnosis and treatment for yourself and your family for urgent care conditions that pop up every summer, like hand-foot-mouth, pinkeye, rashes, sunburns, and other air and water borne viruses. LiveHealth Online is a cost-effective alternative to urgent care or retail clinics and costs $49 for an urgent care visit. As an Anthem Blue Cross member, virtual visits through LiveHealth Online are actually covered for me!
Wait all day while fussing with a partially sealed eyeball? Or try this out? What would you pick?
Well, I tried it and I am a happy satisfied user now.
It was easy to find the app on iTunes for my iPad (and it is also available for use on your computer at LiveHealthOnline.com or through Google Play). I installed, went through the signup process quickly, and in no time at all I was waiting for the doctor to join me.
Here’s me, wondering how this could be so easy.
And poof! There she was! Dr. Nicole Boxer examined me from her office in Minnesota. She asked me several questions about allergies and environmental stuff, if I was exposed to pinkeye that I knew of, etc. Then she actually examined my eyeball by having me hold the iPad camera up to my eye as I looked left, right, up, and down.
I couldn’t get over the whole “press this button and a doctor will show up and deal with you” magic of it all. If I did have pinkeye, the doctor could have ordered a prescription for me, sent right to my preferred local pharmacy. No waiting, no traffic, no getting dressed and leaving the house, even. (Well, unless I had to get the meds.)
Dr. Boxer was accustomed to working this way, and she was patient as I asked her a few questions. She even gave me permission to take a picture. Here’s what it looks like when you visit with a doctor using LiveHealth Online:
Luckily, I did NOT have pinkeye. The doctor said with the recent fires and dry weather, my eyeball was flushing out a foreign object, and that is why it was so goopy and dry the previous night. She suggested I put a hot moist cloth on it and then if it didn’t get better to either come back to LiveHealth or see my regular doctor.
The peace of mind I received from knowing I didn’t have pinkeye was well worth the copay. And actually the first visit to LiveHealth Online was free, and it is for you too: use the code LHOHouseofPrinceVisit when you register to see a doctor and there is no charge! I encourage you to try it, because this service will come in handy when you are traveling on family vacations this summer. You can use LiveHealth Online 24/7, 365 days a year to talk securely and privately by two-way video chat with a U.S.-based, board-certified primary care doctor. That is the height of convenience! Please do take advantage of the free code, which is valid now through October 31, 2014, and let me know what your experience is like!
I am participating in a campaign sponsored by LiveHealth Online to spread the word about this app. It is worth noting that I was excited to learn about it because I used to text photos of my children’s skin rashes to my late best friend who was a pediatrician, begging for a diagnosis, long before I had FaceTime. Also I used to rage at the inconvenience of driving out to the doctor’s office every time I turned around because of having two germy little boys, yelling “There should be video chat with doctors!” So, basically LiveHealth Online was listening when I said “Computer, make it so.”