Telehealth During COVID-19

A health care visit with your Health Care provider may be done while you are in your home.

Because of COVID-19, you and your health care provider (HCP) may be worried about having a lot of patients in the health center at the same time. It may be hard for you to get to your health center for many reasons.

You may be able to have a medical visit with your health care provider from home during COVID-19. These are called telehealth visits. Telehealth visits are a great way to keep you connected to your HCP. You can do this by using a computer, a tablet, a smartphone with video or even a regular telephone with no video.  

If you think you would like to have a telehealth visit, check with your health center to see if this is an option. Some specialists and behavioral health counselors also offer this type of visit. 

Some of your health care visits may have to be in person for part or all of the visit – like getting a physical exam, tests, or injections.

These visits are covered Medi-Cal services for PHC members. If you have any questions about your visit, please call your HCP. Your HCP number is found on the front of your PHC Member ID Card. You can also call PHC Member Services team at 
(800) 863- 4155 TTY Users (800) 735-2929 or call 711.

 Here are some tips to help your telehealth visit go smoothly

Setting Up Device.jpg
Before Visit.jpg
During Visit.jpg
After Visit.jpg

​Setting up your device

​Before your visit

​During your visit

​After your visit

Setting Up Device.jpgSetting up your device

• Your health center should be able to help you set up the visit.  

• You may need to use the Internet and/or have Wifi.  

- Your health center may send you a web link to use during the visit.    

- The web link will help you get to their communication system. 

- They may ask you to download a program or app for your computer, tablet, or smart phone.    

• If possible, close programs or apps that are running, so your device is focused on the visit.

• Make sure your device is charged or plugged in. You do not want to run out of battery or power during the visit. 

• Prop up or set up the device so your hands are free to write things down.  

• If you have video use the front facing camera so you can see what you look like at the same time as you see the HCP.

• Do a microphone check. Ask the HCP, “Can you hear me?”  Change the volume if needed. 

• You may want to ask for a test run to try out the system.

• If you have a voice only telephone visit, then it is just like a regular telephone call. 

Before Visit.jpgBefore your visit

• You will be asked to verbally consent (agree) to the telehealth visit.

• When you make your appointment, be sure to ask your HCP for interpreter/language assistance services if you need them.  As a PHC member, language assistance services are available to you at no cost.  Call (800) 863-4155, (TTY: (800) 735-2929 or 711).

• Know what time the visit is set for. Find out if the health center will call you or if you will make the call.  You may be asked to check in early to make sure the system is working well.

• Find a private, quiet spot (no TV or music). Try to have kids and pets out of the room if possible.

• Check the lighting and background where you plan to sit for the visit. 

- Make sure the lighting is shining on you.

- Try to avoid bright backgrounds like windows.

- Remember, the Health Care provider can see what's behind you.

• Wear clothes like you are going for an in-person health center visit

• Write down your list of questions 

• Have your list of medication ready.

• If you can, take your "Vital Signs" before the visit.  This would include your weight, height, temperature and, if you can, your blood pressure and pulse.

During Visit.jpgDuring your visit

• Talk slowly, be clear, and loud enough to be understood.

• Use headphones or ear buds to listen if you can.

- If not use the speaker setting if available on your phone.  Computers and tablets have microphones built in. 

• Ask questions you may have during the visit.

• Write things down during the visit.

• You may need to show the Health Care Provider parts of your body or move your joints in certain ways. 

• If the visit is for a child, you may start by yourself but be ready to bring the child into the visit space.

After Visit.jpgAfter your visit

• Write down the answers to the following questions:

- Will there be a follow up visit, what kind?

- Do you need to be seen in person?

- Will there be a referral, prescription, or test?

• The answers will serve as a reminder for your next visit.