When you don’t feel well, the last thing you feel like doing is leaving the comfort of your bed to go to a waiting room in a hospital. And, the worst part is, sometimes you feel better during the day, so you don’t go to the hospital. But when night comes, it seems like your symptoms just got ten times worse. And, leaving home at 11 pm when you are sick is not the most attractive option.
Over the last year, I was introduced to several doctor apps by some of my friends. At first, I was amused by the fact that you can consult a doctor right from your phone, but then I quickly realized how useful it can be. After doing a bit of research, and testing several apps, I made a selection of the top 3 doctor apps, so you can get medical attention when you need it. I’ll provide some of the pros and cons of each one below, so you can easily find one that is right for you.
Doctor On Demand – Consultations with or without health insurance
One of the doctor apps I like the most is Doctor On Demand. I particularly like the fact that you can set up a consultation with any doctor, regardless if you have health insurance. I’ve found that the consultation fees are reasonable, so even if you are not covered, you can still get health advice from a doctor without breaking your wallet. I also like that you can speak to a doctor anytime you need to, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Another plus I’ve found is that you can even get prescriptions or lab work orders directly from board-certified physicians. So, you can head straight to the pharmacy for your medication right after your consultation.
The only limitation I’ve found is that you cannot get referrals for other doctors from your online consultations. So, if you need the attention of a specialist, you will need a direct referral from your primary care physician. Still, I’ve found it to be a great way to get immediate attention that is affordable and reliable.
MDLIVE – Connect with a Doctor fast
Another doctor app I really like is MDLIVE. I’ve found this to be a great choice if you want to speak with a doctor ASAP, regardless of the time of day. In fact, supposedly the service is available 24/7, all 365 days of the year. I also like how quickly you are connected to a doctor. With just a few taps you can set up your appointment, and within 15 minutes you will be speaking to a board-certified physician via audio or video chat. Another plus I’ve found is that you can get health advice for a wide range of conditions including the flu, pink eye, UTIs, addictions, depression, relationship issues, and more.
While you can speak to a doctor via video, I’ve found that the video consultation option is limited to the hours between 7 AM to 9 PM on weekdays. Alternatively, you can schedule an appointment ahead of time to video chat outside of those hours. However, the audio consultation option is always available, so you can always get online help when you need it.
BetterHelp – Keep your mental health in check
My final pick is BetterHelp. I found this to be a great option if you want an easy way to speak to a therapist or counselor at any time of the day. One of the reasons I really like it is that there is no time limit to your consultation. So, you can message your therapist at any point throughout the day and continue the conversation fluently without interruption. I also like that you have the option to chat via text or video, so you can discuss any issues in a way that is comfortable for you. Another plus I’ve found are the group webinars, as you can learn valuable tips and information on a variety of topics that can help you in your everyday life.
Better Help offers a variety of subscription plans, including weekly, monthly and annual options. So, just make sure you pick the right one, so you don’t run into any unexpected charges. On the plus side, I really like the fact that the customer service team is available to discuss lower payment options if the subscription plans are more than you can afford.
Whether you need some quick health advice on reducing a high fever, or you want to consult with a therapist to help with your anxiety, you will find exactly what you need with any of the apps I selected. If you want to consider additional options, I suggest you check out this list I found during my research.
The list mentions some other really great online doctor apps. So, if you weren’t crazy about my picks, I’m certain you’ll find something you like there. At the end of the day, it comes down to getting reliable health advice when you need it. And, with these doctor apps on your phone, you can speak to a doctor anytime you need to.