Telehealth

Physical distancing has taught us how to do so much of our daily lives online! We’re learning how to grocery shop, do our jobs, go to school, hang out with friends and family, all without leaving our favorite screen. It’s about time we learn how to get our health care over the computer too.

mom and baby talking to Dr. using computer — telehealth

What is telehealth?
Telehealth is any use of electronic communications to get health care when you and the doctor aren’t in the same place at the same time. If you have a phone or a device with the internet, you already have everything you need to do telehealth!

I do have this thing I thought I’d get checked out after the pandemic is over.
If you have a health concern, don’t ignore it or delay care. It’s important to take care of ourselves now, especially since pandemic-related stress and anxiety can make other health problems harder to deal with. Besides, taking great care of ourselves now keeps us out of the hospital or emergency room later!

It’s kind of a weird thing. I’m pretty sure they can’t help me without seeing me in person.
That could be, but you may be surprised by what’s possible using telehealth. Some health care providers are using telehealth for wellness visits, prescriptions for medicine, diagnosing and treating skin conditions, eye exams, mental health counseling, sinusitis, or back pain.

I’m not sure my doctor does this.
Maybe not, but call and ask. Even if your doctor didn’t previously offer telehealth, many health care providers are starting to now.

Do I have to learn some new technology?
There have been recent federal policy changes that now allow us to use video tools and apps that you probably have already for telehealth appointments, including Apple FaceTime, Facebook Messenger video chat, Google Hangouts video, Zoom, or Skype. Ask your doctor what they support.

If you do need to be seen in person, remember doctors and hospitals are doing everything they can to make getting health care safe for you and other patients. Don’t delay care because you are concerned you might get COVID-19 at the clinic or hospital.

If you or someone you know has recently lost or will be losing health insurance coverage, download the mobile app, WAPlanfinder, or visit wahealthplanfinder to browse health insurance options and get covered. Apple Health enrollment is open year-round.

Practice compassion

Keep yourself and your family healthy by making sure you all get the health care you need! Let’s emerge from this time of isolation healthier!

More information

Stay tuned to our blog for more information on how you can help stop the spread of COVID-19. Sign up to be notified whenever we post new articles.

Information in this blog changes rapidly. Check the state’s COVID-19 website for up-to-date and reliable info at coronavirus.wa.gov.

Answers to your questions or concerns about COVID-19 in Washington state may be found at our website. You can also contact our call center at
1–800–525–0127. Hours: 6 am-10 pm, seven days a week.

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