Over the past month, Alight Health Pros® have talked to tens of thousands of participants from across the U.S. due largely to the COVID-19 pandemic, and a common theme has emerged from those conversations – as our healthcare system rushes to contain the virus and treat those affected, people are facing new, unfamiliar challenges concerning their everyday health and wellbeing. Between provider offices and urgent care centers closing their doors to lengthy telemedicine hold times, people’s patience and resiliency are certainly being tested.
Below are 5 tips you can share with employees who need help accessing traditional care for themselves and their families for routine care and illness:
- Consider alternatives for doctor consultations.
Be aware that your primary doctors’ offices could be closed or not seeing patients in non-emergency situations. However, most common medical issues can be addressed remotely via providers’ virtual care options like an online portal or mobile app, so be sure to ask what options they have available.
- Utilize telemedicine programs.
If your employer offers telemedicine as part of your benefits program, now is the time to use it. While wait times may be longer than average, this is a great way to receive on-demand care from a safe distance.
- Use good judgment.
If you have a non-essential appointment or annual check-up, check with the office to see if they are postponing until a later date to help free up resources. Many providers are proactively rescheduling appointments and confirming those that should be kept. If you decide to delay your non-essential appointment, call to reschedule as no-shows contribute to the limited availability of care.
- Be proactive.
If you need care, you may have to contact multiple provider offices to find out if they are open. Providers outside of the hospital environment may have more availability during this time, and they are generally more cost effective than hospital-based providers.
- Seek expert guidance.
Contact your health navigation provider or nurse line for help. If you have Alight’s Healthcare Navigation solution, our dedicated Health Pros® are ready to help you gain access to essential services and high-quality care during these unprecedented times.
Please note this is not a substitute for medical advice - if someone is experiencing urgent or emergency circumstances, they should seek appropriate medical care.