How online health care might save your holidaysSunday, December 26, 2021
Dr Ché Bowen
As we approach Christmas and many of us go off on breaks, we are not anticipating our celebrations to be deterred by any illness or accidents. However, sometimes these instances are out of our control. Luckily, needing a doctor's visit does not have to take away from your holiday and family time. Whether you're feeling sick from the exhausting rush of the holidays, you catch a cold from changes in the weather or you have a small accident while preparing Christmas dinner or setting up decorations, telemedicine provides reliable and convenient health care for you anywhere you might be. Keep reading to learn how telemedicine can help you stay healthy during the holidays and avoid unforeseen inconveniences.
Access to health care in remote locations
Many of you may travel to more rural areas this holiday to spend time with family or return to your hometowns. In the case of needing any form of medical attention such as prescription refills, understanding your symptoms or just advice for any medical concern, you can speak with a doctor online very easily using telemedicine websites or mobile apps. Call, text or video chat with your doctor about your concerns from wherever you may be located. This will not require you to leave your community for access to a doctor. This is particularly convenient for those located in areas that are a far distance from health-care centres.
Treatment from familiar faces during travel
If you are travelling to a new country during the holidays and your child becomes ill, you face some concerning issues from a long-standing illness or you need advice on how you can treat some of your symptoms with over-the-counter medicines, telemedicine will certainly come in handy. Rather than trying to find a doctor's office where you feel safe and comfortable within a new country, especially one that may speak another language, you can access online health care from doctors in your home country. If your personal doctor offers telemedicine services you can reach out to them specifically so you may call or text them about your concerns. Otherwise, safe and easy-to-use telemedicine services such as MDLink offer a range of doctors locally that you can gain access to anywhere once there is reliable Internet connection. You may call, text or video chat with one of the health-care providers available to advise you on how you can treat your ailment with what may be accessible to you in your place of travel.
Fast and reliable access to health care
The holidays are a busy time for many of us; as such, any form of illness will prove to be a huge inconvenience during this time. We only have a short period to get all our affairs in order and then enjoy time with our loved ones. There is no time for getting sick or hurting ourselves! Luckily, telemedicine allows you to get access to health care quickly and safely without taking much time away from you. You may get a prescription refill sent to your pharmacy and pick it up in no time, avoiding the seasonal traffic or long waits at the doctor just for a prescription. Or maybe you strained your neck or back trying to lift that Christmas tree. Simply use a telemedicine website or mobile app to find a doctor online and get advice via text, audio or video call. In no time you can have your symptoms treated and even prescriptions available to you at a nearby pharmacy.
Additionally, if you are making the effort during this holiday to only surround yourself with your loved ones to protect your circle from COVID-19, telemedicine allows you to limit exposure by avoiding possibly jam-packed health-care offices during this season.
24/7 access to health care
Like many of us, our primary health-care provider may wish to take a holiday from work and be with their loved ones. This doesn't stop us, as patients, from needing medical attention. Luckily, telemedicine is offered 24 hours a day, seven days a week, with no holiday breaks. You will have access to other doctors who are at your service at whatever time of day you may need their assistance, even during the holidays.
When not to use telemedicine during the holidays
While there are several benefits to using telemedicine during this busy time, there are of course times when this method of treatment is not appropriate. If you have urgent issues such as excessive bleeding, vomiting, falling unconscious or feeling you may have broken or fractured some part of your body, telemedicine may not be the best treatment option for you. Some ailments are best treated with in-person physical examinations and medication and this may not be accessed through telemedicine. Assess your injury and figure out what may be the best treatment option for you. Moreover, telemedicine may serve as a starting point for your treatment, with a doctor remotely assessing your symptoms and requesting that you go to an in-person treatment centre for further evaluation.
Stay safe this holiday season and protect yourself and your loved ones from getting ill as best as you can. If you do, however, end up with some form of ailment during this time, consider telemedicine as a first option for treatment to allow for a smooth and easy holiday season. You can learn more about telemedicine in Jamaica and the region online at www.theMDLink.com.
Dr Ché Bowen, a digital health entrepreneur and family physician, is the CEO & founder of MDLink, a digital health company that provides telemedicine options. Check out the company's website at www.theMDLink.com. You can also contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.