Amwell: The Future is Now

by Cate on September 20, 2016

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Earlier this year, I gave notice at my “regular” full-time job, and with that, I said good-bye to company health benefits. (One of these days, I’ll do a full post on my new career path, but in the meantime…) Before I left, I did research to see what my options were in terms of health care benefits, because no way was I going to go without. I found a solid and affordable option with a freelancers’ union, but there is one option I didn’t know about … Amwell Healthcare, and the whole service is both kind of amazing and very 2016. It’s one of those things that highlights the advancement of technology, and how far we’ve really come, to the nth degree.

I partnered with Momtrends to chat with you about Amwell, and I could have chosen topics like the benefits of staying hydrated or healthy snacks to pack for your kids whilst on vacation, both topics that are rooted in the medical field, but when I saw one of the options for my post was to have an actual televisit with a real, live Board-certified Amwell doctor, I went that route instead.

Because I was curious on how it all worked.

And mostly … was it as good as a real, in-the-office visit with a doctor?

In short, yes. Now, I’m not going to lie. I had a bit of a false start getting connected with the service to begin with, and if you follow me on snapchat (cateomalley), you saw it in real time. I created a user name, password, added basic health background information, payment information ($49/visit) and waited my turn … and waited and waited and waited.

First I couldn’t get connected to the system at all. Then I got connected to a doctor and the the video portion wasn’t working. The video portion is an important part of your televisit because you see the doctor and they see you. Kind of like skyping. I ended up downloading the app and it worked perfectly.

The above technological issues could have been completely related to my computer, but whether or not it was, I totally suggest going straight to the (free) app and using it that way. I was, no joke, talking with the doctor within minutes of logging in. The system shows you the available doctors, allows you to choose who you want (maybe you have a male/female preference? or maybe you want a particular doctor?), and then tells you how long the wait is. My wait was “under ten minutes,” but within three, I was shown the message that my assigned doctor was reviewing my file and would be right with me. And she was. Untitled

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She started by asking me for the reason for my visit. I explained that I have had migraines for a few years now, and they have started getting a lot worse lately. Is there anything from an all-natural standpoint that I can do to either thwart them or making them easier to deal with?

She said for the most part, no, but three factors to pay attention to were 1) was I getting enough sleep (not by a long shot when my 8 year old keeps waking me up at 4 am because of nightmares, 2) if I was getting too much caffeine, or not enough and 3) she suggested keeping a headache journal to see if I can find any triggers or patterns. Had I wanted to go the prescription route, Dr. Weber could have taken care of that, and sent it right over to my pharmacy, which is information that the system takes in the beginning of the profile section.

Your video visit with the doctor is completely private and HIPAA compliant, and if you’re advocating for someone else, or vice-versa, they can be part of the visit as well. The Amwell team of doctors has 24/7/365 availability, which is kind of awesome, especially if you’re a parent, and especially during the crazy season of school and sports and … life. And if you’re out of town, or can’t get into your regular doctor, it’s the perfect time to give AmWell a try.

You can use the code TELEVISIT19 if you follow this link, and get your first visit for $1. Yep, just a buck gives you access to doctors with an average experience level of 15 years, and a company that the Wall Street Journal said was “transforming health care.” Doctors, internists, and even psychologists … all from the comfort of your living room couch and just clicking away.

Although I have a regular doctor, Amwell is a good, in-your-pocket source for those times when the planets don’t align just right and you can’t get to your regular physician, or you’re out of town, or need a second opinion, or…?

And my migraines? Although I have a prescription from a doctor, I have started a migraine journal to see if that helps in tracking the triggers. Baby steps, and copious amounts of caffeine and sleep. Here’s hoping.

You can also visit AmWell on:
Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram

*I was compensated for this by Momtrends on behalf of AmWell, but all thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that support my family.

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