Apps and online services are providing Americans mobile access to birth control. Health practitioners can prescribe now birth control after a short video conference with patients.
Thanks to the 1996 Telemedicine Development Act and 2011 Telehealth Advancement Act, some states across the United States – such as California – allow Americans to have access to healthcare via online or with a video conference.
Several apps and websites break down the barriers between doctors and patients with online birth control consultations. Such is the case of the apps Nurx, Lemonaid and Planned Parenthood, Maven and Virtuwell websites. All these telemedicine resources provide patients with different health cares, ranging from birth control pills to allergies or urinary tract infections. Depending on the requirement, the patient should say very which one suits their needs.
For example, the Lemonaid app charges just $15 for a medical review of a patient’s medical history and send a birth control pill prescription to a local drugstore. Other online services have age minimums ranging from 16 to 18 years, depending on the requirement. Some, just like Lemonaid, charge patients from their credit card but others take health insurance. What is for sure is that all of them count with licensed practitioners.
Online birth control prescription
The apps mentioned above and online services offer women a different option from going to a doctor’s office to get birth control treatments.
Via some birth control apps or sites, licensed practitioners, physicians or nurses, can prescribe birth control pills, including emergency contraception, that depending on the drugmaker, can be shipped right to the patient’s home or the nearest pharmacy.
To get an online consultation with a health provider, women only have to answer some questions about their medical information and attached a photo for a doctor to review. Sometimes a short video conference with the physician is required, but right a way, women can have access easily to a birth control prescription.
Among health practitioners community the development of the telemedicine has brought a more accessible option for lots of women and they are pleased about facilitating patient’s lives. However, they advise that apart from birth control prescriptions other health concerns cannot be dealt with via online or by video.
Nurse Jacqui Letran, who is worried about with online birth control prescription, said this is a way of preventing unwanted pregnancy in teenagers, but it is also an advantage for those women who do not have enough money to pay for a personal doctor consultation. Even for those who simply cannot get to a health provider office because they do not count with time or easy access to it.
Letran recommends healthy women to visit their regular doctor for a first birth control prescription, and they can ask for refills by apps or telehealth. Women might be missing out on important aspects of medical care if only online consultations are used.
“If you’re not seeing your healthcare provider on a regular basis, you’re missing out on quite a bit of healthcare education.The majority of women can very safely take birth control, but for the small percentage who can’t, a physical doctor’s visit is essential,” she said.
Source: Los Angeles Times