We’ve all been there. You are feeling bad, you know you are coming down with something, but you have neither the desire nor the time to see the doctor. Work is piling up and you don’t have time to travel to your doctor’s office. Research at Harvard has been done in this area and revealed it takes approximately two hours out of your day on average to see a physician (1). As we mentioned in a previous blog post, over half the cost of a doctor visit has nothing to do with medical care. In fact, studies find higher expenses related to travel costs and loss of productivity at work (2). Add to this the two-hour time commitment and it is no wonder that patients are looking for quicker access and avenues to bypass the waiting room. Urgent or acute care walk-in clinics have been on the rise, but you still have to leave the workplace or your home to get there. So, given all this wasted time, what are your other options? We’ve outlined them below:
1. Suffer through it
This has been the “go-to” for many people. You go to work, take your decongestants, cough and cold medicines, pain killers and just suffer through. Not the best option for you, your co-workers or your company. In fact, studies show that people going to work while sick account for the majority of the $150 billion that U.S. businesses lose in productivity related to employee related illness (3). So, what should you do?
2. Online health care
Also known as “telemedicine,” this type of care has exploded in popularity over the last few years. The idea is simple: bring the doctor to the patient…virtually. The goal is to increase access for patients who may not have the time, money, or transportation to get to the doctor’s office. As the financial burden of health care is being shifted to patients who have less free time, the value of care becomes important.
SmartDocMD is a telemedicine platform that has taken value and convenience to another level. What if there was no waiting room, virtual or otherwise? What if doctors were waiting for you? The SmartDocMD proprietary online health care platform combines Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) with access to board-certified physicians who work “on-demand” to address your health problems. The process is simple: answer an online patient interview at a time of your choosing. Once you are done with the interview the SmartDocMD A.I. system will help determine if you need one of our doctors. If you do, your online patient interview is evaluated by our docs who then will send you a complete diagnosis and treatment plan including prescriptions sent electronically to your pharmacy, along with prevention tips, follow up plans, and more. Average response time is typically 30 minutes or less. This is health care on your terms. So, what are you waiting for? Stop feeling sick, skip the waiting room and start your care now.
1 Ray KN, Chari AV, Engberg J, Bertolet M, Mehrotra A. Disparities in Time Spent Seeking Medical Care in the United States. JAMA Intern Med. 2015;175(12):1983–1986.
2 Yamamoto, DK. 2014. RQC. And Mehrotra, A et al. Annals of Int Med, 2009 Vol: 151/5
3 Hemp, P. Presenteeism: At Work—But Out of It. Harvard Business Review. Oct 2004. Accessed online 11/24/18. https://hbr.org/2004/10/presenteeism-at-work-but-out-of-it