DAYTON — Premier HealthNet’s provider offices are now offering E-Visits – a new way for patients to access medical care and engage with their provider without stepping into the physician office.
E-Visits allows Premier HealthNet patients to receive care for a limited set of illnesses, such as back pain, diarrhea, vaginal discharge, red eye, cough, sinus problems, urinary problems, headache, heartburn and fatigue, by communicating their symptoms via their patient portal. Patients who qualify for E-Visits typically receive answers — including prescriptions, if needed – within 24 hours.
Dale Block, MD, a family physician with Premier Family Care of Mason, says E-Visits are a powerful technology to engage a new generation of patients who want to connect with a provider in a way that is consistent with their lifestyle.
“We’re serving generation X, generation Y and millennials, and the younger the patient is the more they want electronic connectivity, especially with their health care provider,” said Dr. Block, who practices with Premier HealthNet.
Dr. Block says patients need to have an accurate understanding of E-Visits:
• A virtual communication — E-Visits are not telemedicine, where patient and provider communicate with each other via video. E-Visits are the virtual communication between patient and provider through MyChart, Premier HealthNet’s patient portal.
• The right fit — The ideal patient is one who is in good standing with their provider’s office. E-Visits are not for symptoms that are life-threatening or for patients who need additional examination.
• More convenience, less cost — Patients are charged a small fee for E-Visits, which can be lower than what a trip into an office would cost. E-Visits that are initiated, but not completed because it doesn’t fit the right criteria do not cost the patient anything.
Dr. Block says E-Visits allow flexibility and convenience for patients who would otherwise have to juggle babysitting or work schedules to get into a provider’s office. The electronic service is also consistent with a trend in health care. Dr. Block was one of several physicians who piloted the E-Visits program and saw great success from patient engagement.
“The whole idea of patient engagement is breaking down communication barriers such as having to get an appointment made, having to make arrangements to get to the office and then driving to a pharmacy to get medicine,” Dr. Block said. “This improves access and helps a patient save time during their day.”
For more information on E-Visits or to find a Premier HealthNet provider near you, visit www.premierhealthnet.com/provider.