Tips for maximizing a virtual doctor visit

  • Updated: April 7, 2014 - 2:57 PM

Dos and don’ts to make the most of your virtual doctor visit, via Dr. Joseph Olson, who works for the app Doctor on Demand.

Don’t video chat and drive. Olson says he gets a lot of video calls from patients while they are driving. His advice: Stop and park. While you’re at it, roll up the windows so you can hear better. And do try using headphones during a video visit.

Do record your vitals. If you’re calling about a fever, take your temperature before the on-screen appointment begins. Doing this saves time and helps the doctor make an informed diagnosis. Remember, you only have 15 minutes.

Don’t call without the patient present. It’s pretty hard for a doctor to check out a sick kid when the kid isn’t on screen. Sometimes, parents call Olson about their sick child who is still at school.

Do list any allergies to medication. Such information (and any other pertinent medical history) is helpful.

Don’t use your grandma’s 3G. Stick with Wi-Fi. It’s typically faster than most other mobile Internet connections, ensuring a smooth video transmission.

Do have your previous prescription bottles handy. If you need a refill, the screen doc will want to see them for verification.

Allie Shah

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