One of the most complex industries in the United States is healthcare, and the coronavirus has only made things worse. The social distancing guidelines, which were to last for 15 days only have now been extended, and visiting your doctor now is plain risky.  At this moment, you should consult with your doctor remotely. There are several mobile applications that you can use to check your symptoms and reach your physician if you or a loved one is feeling unwell.

Taking Care of Your Mental Health During Lockdown

Stress is a normal part of life. However, the current pandemic has caused anxiety, stress, and a sense of loneliness to many Americans. People who are already dealing with mental health issues have been affected more and have to keep up with treatment. Although you can look after your mental health care by exercising your body, practicing self-care, and keeping yourself distracted, you will still need to get professional help.

You can call or text your psychiatrist, and order your prescription via phone or use an application. Alternatively, you can request your pharmacy to deliver your medication. If you are looking for affordable mental health care services, you may want to consider nonprofits, which offer affordable counseling sessions. There are also inexpensive online applications, but they shouldn’t be a replacement for speaking to your therapist in real-time.

Telehealth can help you manage your chronic disease

If you have a chronic disease, you may be used to visiting your doctor’s office. However, due to the pandemic, you may now have to chat with your doctor over a video call. These consultations require some level of privacy and security to protect patient information, but everything has changed quickly after the coronavirus pandemic.

The Department of Health and Human Services recommends some video platforms like Skype and FaceTime for consulting with your doctor. Zoom has also received temporary approval. However, your physician most likely has a telehealth system in place. Therefore, check-in before you decide to contact another doctor. But because of the many telehealth platforms, ensure you look for HIPAA and HITECH compliant platforms with end-to-end encryption.

Insurance companies now pay for telehealth

Although most health insurance companies have historically declined to offer telehealth options, most of them have adjusted their policies after the pandemic. In fact, some insurers have waived copays for telemedicine until June. However, ensure that you read the fine print of your private health insurance.

In the wake of the coronavirus, government healthcare programs have also opened up to telehealth solutions. For example, Medicare patients are now being reimbursed for telehealth services. Previously, the government could only reimburse patients located in remote places, and these patients still had to visit a medical facility and consult with physicians in a different location.

Despite the social distancing policies enacted to help fight the COVID-19 pandemic, patients still need to maintain good communication with their doctors. This is where telehealth comes in – it is a safe and efficient way to communicate with your physician. The World Health Organization has even mentioned telemedicine as an essential service that is strengthening the response to COVID-19.

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