Telehealth: Health care from the safety of your home.

What is telehealth

Telehealth is the use of electronic information and telecommunication technologies to provide care when you and the doctor aren’t in the same place at the same time. If you have a phone or a device with internet access, you already have everything you need to get medical care or services through telehealth — you may be able to:

  • Talk to your doctor live over the phone or video chat.
  • Send and receive messages from your doctor using chat messaging, email, secure messaging, and secure file exchange.
  • Use remote patient monitoring so your doctor can check on you at home. For example, you might use a device to gather ECG or other vitals to help your doctor stay informed on your progress.

Benefits of telehealth

Although virtual visits may not be as common as traditional in person doctor’s appointments, there are a lot of benefits that explain why this type of care is growing in popularity.

  • Reduces everyone’s exposure to COVID-19
  • No need to commute, travel in bad weather, take as much time off of work, or arrange child care
  • Often able to see a doctor more quickly, sometimes same-day
  • Ability to address health issues, often without leaving your home
  • Easier to access specialists who live outside of your area

Telehealth isn’t a perfect fit for everyone or every medical condition. 

Make sure you discuss any disadvantages or risks with your doctor.

A message from U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the United States Surgeon General