MIDLAND, Texas — With so much emphasis on social distancing in light of the COVID-19 outbreak, some people are fearing going to the doctor at the risk of getting exposed to the virus.
But there is one option here in West Texas that has got you covered. It is an app called Basin MD.
It gets you a virtual appointment with a doctor through your phone, laptop, or tablet.
“It’s a facetime visit with the patient," said Doctor Stephanie Huhn with Basin MD. "We talk about symptoms, we ask to do an exam, and then help decide what’s the next stage of the plan.”
Instead of waiting in a waiting room exposed to excess germs, patients can join the virtual waiting room from home the comfort of their own home.
This week Basin MD had on average around 30 to 40 people in the virtual waiting room at a time.
“The reason why this is really taking off an interest now is because it’s so incredibly important to stay away from these public areas," Huhn said. "Catching something like COVID-19 could cause long-term or serious health consequences for those at risk.”
But even before COVID-19, telemedicine was taking off.
“There’s been a big surge in telemedicine for 6-10 years but it’s just never gained traction because people like that personal interaction," Huhn said. "It is very likely that with this pandemic we will demonstrate to people how easy it is to do virtual medicine appointments."
She believes it will gain traction and take off and then a lot more visits will be handled virtually.
Depending on your insurance and how you use the virtual appointment, the cost is the same as it would be in person.
Just this week, Medicare announced they are including tele-doctors in their coverage.
For Dr. Huhn, it is no surprise. In fact, she thinks it is the medicine of the future.
“I think in the future my regular office will be a mix of half virtual and half in person,” Huhn said.
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