Telehealth and COVID-19
It is important to protect yourself and your doctor during the COVID-19 public health emergency. Telehealth can help you get access to your healthcare provider without spreading or getting COVID-19.
If you are having a medical emergency, call 911.
I am worried that I have COVID-19
It is extremely important that you self-isolate if you think you may have COVID-19 or have been exposed. That means staying home from work or school and distancing yourself from friends and family, even the people who live in your home.
Follow these steps to get the care you need.
Start by using a COVID-19 self-assessment tool
Use an online COVID-19 self-assessment tool before you contact your doctor. This protects everyone’s health and safety and reduces the burden on our health care system.
Here are two self-assessment tools based on information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
A self-assessment tool will ask you a few questions about:
- Symptoms you have
- Whether you have been in close physical contact with someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19
- Whether you live in a community where many people have been diagnosed with COVID-19
- Any medical conditions that put you at high risk for complications if you get COVID-19
Know your telehealth options
Many doctors now provide telehealth services. Contact your doctor or health insurance to ask about your options.
There are also health centers and on-demand telehealth services available to everyone, including people who do not have health insurance.
See finding telehealth options for details.
Did you know?
If you have trouble paying for phone or internet services, you may qualify for federal support through the Lifeline program .
Before you meet with your doctor online
Your doctor will need several important pieces of information when you schedule a telehealth visit to discuss COVID-19. Consider writing down this information before your virtual visit:
- Your symptoms — What are they and when they started
- Your health — Any other health conditions you have and how you have been managing them during the pandemic
- Exposure to COVID-19 — If you have definitely been exposed, how, and when
- Your questions — If there is anything specific you want to know about your health or the health of other people in your home
I have COVID-19 symptoms 4 or more weeks after infection
Some COVID-19 patients continue to have symptoms four or more weeks after they are diagnosed. They have what’s called long COVID, or Post-Acute Sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection (PASC) Even people who did not have symptoms in the first days or weeks after they were infected can have a post-COVID condition.
Post-COVID health symptoms include:
- Tiredness or fatigue
- Difficulty concentrating or “brain fog”
- Loss of smell or taste
- Dizziness on standing
- Fast-beating or pounding heart
- Chest pain
- Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
- Joint or muscle pain
- Depression or anxiety
- Symptoms that get worse after physical or mental activities
How telehealth helps people with long COVID
Telehealth can help you get the care and monitoring you need without having to leave the comfort of your own home.
There are several ways you may be able to receive care for long-term COVID-19 symptoms:
- Talk to your doctor about telehealth options for follow-up care after leaving the hospital or their office
- Use remote patient monitoring devices so your doctor can check on you at home. For example, these devices might check your blood sugar or blood pressure
- Get support for specialty care faster via telehealth than waiting to see a doctor in person
- Meet with your doctor during a telehealth appointment to discuss lab test results to clearly understand how your symptoms are affecting your body
- Take time during your telehealth appointment to ask your doctor about medications or treatments that can help manage your symptoms
- Use telehealth as a bridge between your in-person appointments. While telehealth is a convenient way to access fast, quality health care, your doctor may want to examine you in person from time to time.
Read more about the long-term effects of COVID-19.
I have a health issue that is not related to COVID-19
It is important to take care of yourself, especially during a pandemic. Stress and anxiety can make other health problems even harder to manage.
Do not ignore health concerns. Contact your doctor for their advice.
Tip: Check out these tips on protecting yourself from COVID-19 fraud.
I am interested in the COVID-19 vaccine
The COVID-19 vaccine is the best way to protect yourself and others from getting the virus. Use these resources if you have questions about the COVID-19 vaccine, where to get one, or how to make an appointment:
- Talk to your doctor.
- Learn more about the COVID-19 Vaccine from the CDC.
Tip: The COVID-19 vaccine is free of charge to everyone regardless of income, immigration, or health insurance status. Doctors’ office visit fees may still apply.
Fast resource to find the COVID-19 vaccine
To find where to get a COVID-19 vaccine near you:
- Search vaccines.gov
- Text your ZIP code to 438829
- Call 1-800-232-0233
- Check your local pharmacy’s website to see if vaccination appointments are available. Find out which pharmacies are participating in the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program.
- Contact your state health department to find additional vaccination locations in the area.
- Check your local news outlets. They may have information on how to get a vaccination appointment.