Everything You Need to Know about Virtual Dermatologist Appointments

Get prescription refills for your acne cream without the commute!
Maria_AzuaMaria_Azua
Jul. 16, 2020
campaign, cherie
Cherie is an online community of beauty lovers sharing their stories; whether that's their favorite products, makeup tutorials, or skincare routines. Download the app today to be a part of #BeautyWithoutBarriers and show the world what beauty means to you! If you’d like to visit a dermatologist to discuss a skincare concern (such as acne, eczema, rashes, etc) but want to continue self-isolating as much as possible, speaking to a doctor through Zoom or over the phone could provide a convenient way for you to do so. Many healthcare practitioners and clinics have expanded to telemedicine to provide a contactless and safe way to discuss symptoms, concerns, and go over prescription options - without the need for waiting rooms or driving in traffic. What is an online dermatologist appointment? During an online or virtual dermatology session, you’ll speak to a dermatologist (and sometimes an assistant) through video chat or phone. If necessary, you may be asked to send close-up photos of the skincare condition as this may be helpful for your doctor to make a diagnosis or if you choose to have your session via phone call. These online sessions also allow you to go over questions about your current prescriptions, request refills, and keep up with your regular check-ups. How to know if you need an online dermatologist appointment According to the American Academy of Dermatology, virtual appointments should be considered an option for non-emergency skin concerns. These could include general acne, rashes, eczema, anti-aging or suspicious moles, skin bumps, etc. + Skin concerns: These could include General acne, anti-aging, rosacea treatment, suspicious moles, etc. + Usual checkup: If you’re looking to social distance as much as possible, you might have considered canceling your usual check-up. An online consultation could help keep you on your usual schedule. + Progress checks: If you are on a prescription regimen, you might have had plans to meet with your dermatologist regularly. With virtual consultations, you can stick to these important regular check-ups, where your dermatologist can keep track of your progress and answer any questions you may have about medication side-effects, re-fills and more. + Prescription refills: Regardless of how far your dermatologist is from you, they’ll be able to send prescriptions to your favorite pharmacy, so you can get your medication on your schedule. If you are unsure if you are dealing with an emergency, it’s best to call your usual dermatologist to find out if your symptoms can be diagnosed and alleviated over FaceTime or Google Hangouts. If it’s determined that your concerns are an emergency, you’ll likely be set up with an IRL appointment or asked to go to your nearest emergency room. When booking a virtual dermatologist appointment, you’ll benefit from: + Privacy: During consultations with your dermatologist over video chat or phone, you’ll still retain the same patient privacies you would expect in an office. + Flexible scheduling: Your online sessions can be as long or short as needed and you may find that some doctors have more flexibility and open slots now that there are fewer patients in the waiting room. + No wait times: In addition to not having to commute to your usual appointment, you’ll also avoid lengthy waiting room session. After confirming your appointment’s date and time, you’ll log into your practitioner’s Zoom, Google Hangout, or Skype room to begin your private session.How do I book a virtual doctor appointment? 1. Contact your dermatologist’s office: Call your usual practitioner to find out if they are offering virtual consultations. If they are, you may have to also cross-reference your insurance policy to make sure that tele-appointments are also covered. 2. Book online: You can find in-network dermatologists offering online consultations through platforms like MDLive or Apostrophe. You’ll be able to browse through specialists, browse through reviews, and filter dermatologists that accept your health insurance. What to expect? - Questionnaires and forms: If you’re booking your tele-appoinment at a new clinic, you may be asked to fill out intake forms before your appointment and/or prepare a list of the medications you are currently taking. - Your usual dermatologist may ask you to fill out a form detailing your concerns to use as an outline during your appointment - this helps save time and helps make sure you don’t leave anything important out during your consultation. - Photo requests: Your dermatologist may ask you to take clear photos of your skin concern or flare-up before your appointment or as a follow-up if a diagnosis was not possible. This might help them better make diagnosis and help prevent an in-person appointment. - Follow-up appointments: Although video chats with your derm save time and allow you to social distance, not all conditions can be treated virtually. Your dermatologist may recommend that you schedule an in-person appointment if they feel it’s needed to fully diagnose or treat your symptoms. The takeawayWhile you may not want to replace your usual in-person appointments with virtual sessions entirely, video consultations with a dermatologist may provide a safe and flexible way for you to talk about any non-emergency skin concerns, refill prescriptions and keep up with check-ups. If you have any doubts about the seriousness of your condition, contact your dermatologist to find out if you should opt for an in-person appointment or if you should request emergency assistance.
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