by Terry Rogers
Bayhealth recently announced that it was offering Bayhealth@Home, a virtual urgent care option that allows you to get medical care sitting at home on your sofa, even in your pajamas. According to Kevin Snyder, Vice-President of Marketing and Communications, the hope is that this option will help reduce wait times. In addition, the healthcare system is offering a coupon code for one free virtual urgent care visit for the next 30 days.
“Right now, longer wait times are the result of several factors which include higher than normal patient volumes, which includes people who are visiting our emergency department for services they should seek elsewhere, like a COVID-19 test,” Snyder said. “We are encouraging patients who are not sick or only experiencing minor symptoms to see a primary care physician, visit our walk-in or utilize virtual urgent care.”
Proper use of emergency services right now is critical, Snyder explained. In addition, the community can do its part to keep people out of the emergency department by wearing a face mask, social distancing, frequently washing their hands and staying up to date on vaccines as well as booster shots.
“Virtual urgent care is quite simple,” Snyder said. “Patients can see a doctor in as few as 10 minutes in most cases simply by downloading the Bayhealth@Home app and creating an account or logging on with a desktop link. Users “request an appointment” and, within 15 minutes, they are seeing a physician on a laptop, desktop or mobile device via a secure portal.”
Although Snyder stated that the app was designed to take pressure off the healthcare system during the pandemic, Bayhealth felt this was an extension of what they have been doing for over 100 years, making sure the community has access to the healthcare resources it needs.
“We launched this service and are offering the 30-day coupon code for a free visit to ensure the community gets the care it needs when healthcare resources are limited due to the surge in COVID-19 cases,” Snyder said. “Long term, Bayhealth@Home will be there to help ensure Bayhealth meets families where they are which is often in the comfort of their own home. We understand life is busy for working professionals and parents. The last thing you want to do is leave your home when you do not feel well. Bayhealth@Home is the answer to those challenges.”
Snyder did caution that Bayhealth@Home is not suitable for all medical conditions. The app is designed for minor illnesses, including colds, flu, fever, rash, abdominal pain, sinusitis, pinkeye, ear infections and other easily treated illnesses. However, anyone experiencing shortness of breath, chest pain, feeling faint or any serious pain should call 9-1-1 and head straight to the nearest emergency department.
“Please never put off care if you feel you need immediate medical attention,” Snyder said. “Bayhealth is here for you even during this busy pandemic.”
The Bayhealth@Home app is available for mobile devices through the App Store or Google Play. Access the desktop or laptop link at www.bayhealth.org/virtual-urgent-care. After using the coupon code or after February 11 at 11:50 PM when the free visit offer expires, virtual visits are just $64. When you check out for your first visit, enter BETTERSOONER in the coupon code section to waive the fee.
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