Telehealth - visits with your doctor by telephone or video - has existed for many years but has become more prominent during the COVID-19 pandemic. Einstein offers telehealth visits for:
- Checkups and routine visits
- Ongoing care for chronic conditions
- Support groups
- Education sessions
- Second opinions
We have taken many steps to ensure your safety in our offices. However, a telehealth visit allows you to have access to your provider when a face-to-face encounter is not convenient or not possible.
Telehealth often works best when you and your provider can both hear and see each other. For this reason, our providers are now offering video appointment visits that allow you to meet virtually through a secure conference line on systems that comply with health information privacy standards.
Here are answers to some common questions about telehealth appointments:
A telehealth visit can meet your health care needs in many situations, including:
- Follow-up or check-in appointments, for example, keeping track of a chronic condition such as diabetes or high blood pressure.
- Counseling and education, such as prenatal care and diabetes management.
- Behavioral health services, which easily adapt to telehealth because they are usually talk-based and require no hands-on care.
- Health screening, especially for COVID-19.Telehealth offers a way to ask about symptoms while reducing the chance of infecting others.
- Other types of visits, such as pre-admission screening for surgery or many different situations where you may need to interact with your provider.
Call your physician’s office if you think a telehealth visit is appropriate. The staff will be the best judge of whether a visit should be in-person or by telehealth.
The first step is to schedule an appointment with your physician. If you have a doctor you normally see, call your doctor's office, submit an appointment request on the Einstein website or call 1-800-EINSTEIN. You can also book an appointment directly online with many physicians. If you need a doctor recommendation, please call 1-800-EINSTEIN. The physician’s office staff will contact you to discuss telehealth and in-person appointment options. Please understand that a telehealth appointment is an actual visit. You have been scheduled with this specific time reserved for you. Make sure that you are scheduling for a time you are available.
To have a telehealth visit with your doctor or health care provider, at a minimum you need a telephone line.
In order to speak with your doctor by video, you also will need:
- An internet connection, preferably high-speed.
- A smartphone, tablet or computer with a camera
- An app that you will download before the visit
Your provider's office will tell you the video application the provider uses. The office also can give you instructions for how to access the system and help you with any technical issues you may be having.
If you have a smartphone or a computer with a camera, a video visit will be easy to set up. If you'll use your smartphone for the appointment, be sure to give your doctor's office the number.
Depending on the platform your doctor uses, you may need to download an app to your tablet or phone, or simply click on a link to begin your video appointment.
Make sure that you have a quiet, private place to sit during your visit. Ensure that your smart phone or tablet is fully charged or connected to a power source.
Before your visit, weigh yourself, measure your height and take your temperature and record the results on a piece of paper, if possible.
Have the following nearby when you speak with the doctor:
- The results of your weight, height and temperature checks
- A list of concerns and questions for your doctor
- Your current list of medications and their doses, or the actual bottles
- Your pharmacy name and telephone number
- Paper and a pen or pencil to take notes
This varies based on where you live and the kind of insurance you have. Check with your insurance plan to make sure you know what to expect and whether you will have a copay.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid has expanded coverage of telehealth visits. Many private insurers have also expanded what they’ll cover, and many states have relaxed restrictions on reimbursing providers for delivery of remote services.
Yes. We take very seriously our responsibility to protect your privacy. We only use applications that comply with all U.S. government standards for the security and privacy of personal health care information
Telehealth appointments can meet many of your health care needs, but sometimes an in-person visit is necessary. In that case, you'll be asked to come to the office for a follow-up appointment or, if your needs are urgent, to go to the local emergency room or urgent care center.
Be sure to bring your notes from your telehealth visit to the in-person appointment. This will allow you to share with the provider the information you received during the virtual call.
To make a telehealth appointment, call your doctor's office, submit an appointment request on the Einstein website or call 1-800-EINSTEIN. You can also book an appointment directly online with many physicians.