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Points to take care of before getting online doctor consultation

Our regular, outgoing, social lives took a massive hit with the spread of COVID-19. The current pandemic has forced the entire world to stay indoors, something which is unprecedented in history. This has created many problems, especially when one might need professional medical help. However, the advancing technology of the 21st century had already laid the foundation for the availability of online health services. The medical sector has also adapted to this period where online medical consultations and

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online doctor consultation are slowly and gradually becoming the norm. One will find very few people ready to take the risk to go for physical visits to the doctor’s clinic. Hence, at a time when the demand for doctor consultations in India is increasing day by day, patients should be aware about a few points or factors before making an appointment with a doctor online –

1)      Expenses – Physical visits to the doctor’s clinics include the visitation charges, travel expenses and of course, requires one to set aside an entire day for the visit to the clinic. Online consultation with doctors helps one to avoid this problem. Not only does one save time, but can also get medical help from the comfort of one’s own home. Before booking an appointment with a particular hospital or doctor, one should compare various services on a monetary basis.

2)      Security: One primary concern many people have with online doctor consultation in India is the security concern. People do not accept their medical records to be shared or leaked to other people. Thus, while consulting online doctors in India, people should ensure that the servers being used by doctors and hospitals have secure systems. Your data should only be visible to your doctor and yourself when you interact with online doctors.

Read Also – Why choose Bajaj FinServ Health App for online doctor consultation?

3)     Consultation hours: Most of the online services are providing online doctor consultation in India for 24/7. Traditionally, medical appointments could only be booked during working hours every day. Now, not only can people book online doctors at any hour of the day, they can even avail these services on weekends too, which were traditionally holidays for private medical practitioners. Before consulting doctors online, patients can now select their preferred timings for consultation, any day of the week.

4)      Credibility: Before you consult a doctor online, make sure to check the proper credentials of the doctor, you are making an appointment. It is imperative to identify the legitimacy of the service provider before sharing your information on their website. One has to follow the caveat emptor principle while making online appointments, which means that the patient himself is responsible for checking the service’s quality and authenticity before using it.

5)      Prescriptions: Doctors can also prescribe E- prescriptions during online doctor consultations to the patients. You should be aware of the E- prescriptions system and how they operate before consulting a doctor online. E- prescriptions help doctors to access a patient’s medical history and give an appropriate medical diagnosis.

6)   Transparency: Medical service providers likely store your personal information for future use and consultation. When talking to an online doctor, it is an obvious fact that the patient would reveal private information to the doctor in confidence. If that information is getting stored, it is one’s duty to determine how the hospitals or the online servers use the data. The patient also has a right to information about the location of the data stored and its accessibility.

7)  Specialised consultation: While consulting doctors online, the patient can choose a specialised medical practitioner according to his/ her needs. Whether it is a general physician, a dermatologist or a gynaecologist, one should know his/ her rights to choose the doctor of their choice for consultation freely.

8)      Reviews: Reviews may not be the most reliable indicator of the authenticity of a particular doctor, hospital or service, but they do carry at least an iota of truth if all reviews give more or a similar picture. While consulting online doctors, check the various studies that people have provided regarding the same person/ service. If most reviews of an online consultation service are positive, then it is likely that the place is accommodating and safe, and vice versa. However, online doctor consultation has many advantages and is being opted by many in recent years.

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