Have you used telehealth? What has been your experience? If you’ve not utilized telehealth services, why not?
That was what we asked our followers on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. They shared their experiences:
“Telehealth has saved me a tremendous amount of money and time, not having to travel to my specialists. I go to Johns Hopkins for specialty HIV care. Where I live in Pennsylvania, there are zero HCPs here who are aware of the importance of my health history.”
“It was a nightmare. Good thing I followed my instincts and went to the ER for a face-to-face consult for my daughter. He said 24-48 hours more and she would have had a dull abscess leading to all sorts of complications.”
“Telehealth in Texas is still lacking, and still heavily restricted depending upon what type of treatment you’re receiving. Definitely would say, if you have anxiety or any sort of substance dependence issue, Texas is not friendly enough to you…nor are they for cancer and HIV/AIDS.”
“I’ve absolutely loved it. I find it a lot more convenient and sort of insist on it now unless I or my doctor feels that an in-person visit is prudent.
“Dr. Nwabara and the entire team at Edgewater Health in both Griffith and Gary [Indiana] have been amazing. When COVID-19 happened, I didn’t know how medical help would be able to be effective and sustain every need that a patient would have. I was blessed to find such a place and capable doctors.”
—Joshua Benton Stovall
“I prefer face to face. Even then, the provider sits behind a computer. During telehealth, you’re looking eye to eye, assuming the technology works. But medicine requires physical proximity; looking at skin, nails, feet, etc. Routine ‘lab’ reviews are fine with telecommunicating, but otherwise it’s a no for me.”
“Three people in our family are living with HIV, and we have visits every 3 months. The first couple of times we thought this is great! We don’t have to leave our home and the appointment was fast! But we still had to leave our house to have our labs drawn, therefore there was a trip to make to our clinic. Each person in our family has very different needs. It can be hard to address all those needs via telehealth. We also missed seeing the faces of our clinic staff in person. Sometimes it’s hard to open up over the computer. Telehealth has its place but it’s no replacement for the connection that you get by seeing your providers face to face and heart to heart.”
“It’s difficult to navigate, even to get to medical results.”
“I’ve had great experience with virtual appointments. Especially on days when I was not feeling well. I’ve been able to prevent cancelling or rescheduling appointments because of the convenience. Being a long-term survivor of HIV for 37 years with multiple comorbidities, these appointments have been a godsend! Too bad it took COVID-19 to get doctors to cooperate with insurance companies to provide this service that insurance companies were already willing to provide. I’m assuming the pay doctors received was less so that’s most likely why they didn’t provide it. I think it’s essential to maintaining our health. Most of the time I don’t think an in-person appointment is needed. Hopefully Medicare and insurance companies will bring the payments more in line with in-person visits to keep this service available even after the pandemic.”
“I have found it a relief and surprisingly just perfect for me at times when going outside to the doc would cause a level of anxiety.
—Chhaya Susanna Feder