As the telemedicine industry expands amid the coronavirus pandemic, it is important for people seeking online care to find apps or websites that best fit their needs.
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Many local hospitals, health care centers and even health insurance providers offer their own telemedicine apps, which may be convenient for those who want to receive care from a familiar institution.
There are other apps, however, that may be more fitting depending on what a patient wants out of a telehealth experience. Here is a list of the top nine telemedicine apps, according to health services news website OnlineMedicalCare.org, which published comprehensive reviews of each site and app. FOX Business included a tenth website since one of the sites on OneMedicalCare.org is no longer available.
"SteadyMD is your personal doctor, online. Making healthcare more affordable than convenient than ever before," the app's description reads.
Users take a quiz to get paired with a doctor that fits with certain preferences and health needs. Doctors can prescribe medications "in minutes," the description says. There are also no co-pays and no waiting times.
The free app has eight reviews and 4.5 stars on the App Store; the app has one five-star review on Google Play.
MDLIVE is a very popular telehealth app with more than 36,000 downloads and a 4.7-star rating. It has more than 2,000 downloads and nearly five stars on Google Play.
"Have an MDLIVE virtual doctor visit with board-certified physicians from the comfort and convenience of your own home or from wherever you are, whenever you want -- nights, after-hours, weekends and holidays," the app's description reads. "MDLIVE also offers behavioral health appointments with licensed therapists and board-certified psychiatrists, as well as dermatology appointments."
Users can have on-demand visits in around 15 minutes. Doctors are board-certified, state-licensed and have 15 years of experience, according to the description. The app is free to download.
Sherpaa describes itself as a "team of friendly doctors here to help you whenever you have a medical concern, a question, an ache or a worry."
Seventy percent of patient concerns are resolved by the app's/website's doctors "on the spot." Doctors can give diagnoses and treatments, referrals, medication refills and provide access to medical tests and procedures between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m.
The app is free to download, has 4.4 stars and four ratings on the App Store and has 3 stars and eight ratings on Google Play.
4. LiveHealth Online
LiveHealth Online is another more popular option. The app has 4.9 stars and 22,000 reviews on the App Store. On Google Play, it has more than four stars and nearly 4,000 reviews.
Users can talk to doctors 24/7 with wait times of under 10 minutes and no appointments necessary unless a user wants to speak to a Spanish doctor. The app provides a Spanish-language service online using Cuidado Medico. Spanish-speaking doctors are available from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m.
"Just log in and select the doctor you would like to see," the description reads.
LiveHealth Online is free to download and is covered by "many insurance plans," according to the description.
PlushCare describes itself as a "trusted, world-class online doctor" with more than 225,000 users.
It also touts physicians who come from "the top 50 U.S. medical schools" who are also licensed in the country. Physicians can treat 97 percent of more than 3,500 medical conditions on the first visit. Additionally, if an online doctor is unable to treat a user, the online appointment is free.
Physicians are available 365 days of the year "for medical care and online treatments, including prescriptions," the description reads.
PlushCare excepts insurance from a number of major providers. The average insured patient pays $25 while uninsured patients pay $99.
The app is free to download, has 4.9 stars and more than 19,000 ratings on the App Store. On Google Play, it has nearly 5 stars and 1,265 ratings.
6. Doctor On Demand
Doctor On Demand has 4.9 stars and more than 60,000 ratings on the App Store; it also has nearly five stars and more than 33,000 ratings on Google Play.
"Connect face-to-face with a doctor, psychiatrist or psychologist through video on your iPhone or iPad. Doctor on Demand works with or without insurance and is available at reduced rates through major health care plans and large employers. You'll always see your cost upfront and won't receive a surprise bill after your visit," the app's description reads.
Users can also take free mental health assessments to determine whether Doctor On Demand will "benefit" them.
Physicians on the app, who have an average of 15 years of experience, are available 24/7/365 and take appointments as well as on-demand visits. The app is free to download.
BetterHelp.com is a psychiatry-focused telehealth website and app with more than 3,000 licensed and accredited counselors and therapists with at least three years of experience and different areas of expertise.
When users sign up for BetterHelp's service, they will be connected to counselors who fit their "objectives, preferences and the type of issues [they are] dealing with," according to the app's description.
Users can connect with therapists and counselors, all of whom have at least a Master's or doctorate, in a chat room during any time of day or night. Session frequency depends on personal preference and availability. Prices range from as low as $40, the description says.
The app, which has a 4.7-star rating and more than 15,000 reviews on the App Store, as well as nearly 10,000 reviews on Google Play and about 4.5 stars.
Teladoc is the most popular of the 10 listed apps with 4.8 stars and 231,000 reviews on the App Store, as well as nearly five stars and 30,000 reviews on the Google Play store. It is the No. 1 rated medical app for iOS products.
"Teledoc connects you with a board-certified doctor 24/7/365 through the convenience of phone or video consults. Within minutes, a doctor will contact you ready to listen and resolve your issue. If medically necessary a prescription will be sent to your pharmacy of choice," the app's description reads.
The service is provided through employers, insurance and organizations.
Amwell provides 24/7 on-demand service or scheduled appointments with doctors who have experience with a number of different conditions and illnesses, according to its description.
Amwell is also very transparent about cost. Urgent care is $69, online therapy is $95, a psychiatry visit is $200 or $90 for a follow-up, nutrition counseling is $45 and breastfeeding support is $130 or $75 for a follow-up.
The app is free to download and has 4.9 stars and more than 15,000 reviews on the App Store. On Google Play, the app has more than 7,000 reviews and more than 4 stars.
98point6 is an app-only telemedicine service that provides "on-demand, text-based" diagnoses and treatments via secure, in-app messaging" that is available 24/7, according to its description.
"98point6 provides on-demand diagnosis, treatment and consultation from board-certified physicians and sends necessary prescriptions to your pharmacy—all via secure, in-app messaging. Our unique, text-based care delivery means you can get the right care at the right time. No appointments, no travel. We’re available nationwide, 24/7, 365 days a year," the website's descriptions read.
The description adds that "Personal Plans subscriptions come at an introductory rate of $30 for the first 3 months, with unlimited access to on-demand care for just $1 per visit. When that initial period ends, you have the option to enroll in an annual plan for only $120 per year + $1 per visit."
98point6 is free to download, has nearly five stars and 900 reviews on Google Play, and five stars and 10,000 reviews on the App Store.