Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, virtual visits are more important now than ever before. Virtual visits are one-on-one video or phone appointments with your health care provider. These visits allow you to get medical care and guidance from the comfort of your own home.
Whether you're looking to schedule a follow-up appointment or a first-time consultation about a procedure or surgery, you can connect with your providers virtually. These specialists may include doctors, physician assistants, nurse practitioners and others.
If you have an upcoming appointment, this article offers some tips that can help you get the most of out of your virtual visit.
At Brigham Health, our health care providers can help established or new patients stay on track with care that's personalized to their needs. Virtual visits are conducted through a video conference platform on Patient Gateway or Zoom, or via phone call.
During a virtual visit, your health care provider can:
"Even though I'm not in the same room with patients during a virtual visit, we can still discuss medications, review concerns and come up with a care plan, and there's still a closeness to virtual meetings," says Dale S. Adler, MD, a cardiologist at Brigham Health.
If you have any health devices at home, your provider may ask you to help collect some of the following information before your visit:
Prior to your virtual visit, it's helpful to prepare the following for your provider:
If you're concerned about an abnormality on your body, take pictures to show your provider. For example, if you have a rash or swelling, a picture may help your doctor diagnose it properly. You can also email pictures to the clinic before your visit.
To ensure a productive virtual visit, make sure to connect from a quiet space in your home with good lighting that allows your provider to see and hear you clearly. Here are some more tips to ensure your virtual visit goes smoothly:
"At the end of a virtual visit, the most important question to have answered is whether everyone is satisfied," says Dr. Adler. "Can we wait for a certain time interval to meet again, or do we need testing and further examination?"
If needed, your provider may schedule an in-person meeting. However, to keep patients and providers safe during the COVID-19 pandemic, most follow-up inpatient visits and procedures are being scheduled several months in advance. Your provider can still order blood work, medical tests and/or imaging during COVID-19.
If you have a serious health concern, call your provider right away. Your provider may arrange a visit with an urgent care provider. If you have a medical emergency, like symptoms of a heart attack or stroke, call 9-1-1 or visit the nearest emergency department. These conditions require immediate, in-person treatment.
Schedule a virtual visit with your Brigham Health provider and experience expert care from the comfort of your home.
To request your virtual visit, please call 857-307-6137 Monday - Friday, 8am-5pm ET or complete the form to receive a callback.