Dignity Health is now offering free virtual urgent care service for anyone in the Sacramento region experiencing mild to moderate symptoms of the COVID-19. Health officials are recommending virtual urgent care visits when possible as the first option for anyone who wants to talk with doctor or health care professional about their symptoms.
This new service is being called Virtual Care Anywhere comes as medical facilities across the country experience an increase in the number of coronavirus patients. The service is considered a safe and easy way for people to get advice without making a trip to a doctor's office or emergency room. However, anyone experiencing severe symptoms of a respiratory illness, such as a high fever or difficulty breathing, should call 9-1-1 or visit the closest health care facility. If possible you should call ahead to let them know about your symptoms, so they can be prepared to prevent the spread of the virus.
To use the service, go online to www.dignityhealth.org/virtualcareanywhere, download the Virtual Care Anywhere app in the Apple App Store or Google Play Store, or call 855-356-8053 and use the coupon code COVID19. The service has a fee of $35 per visit, and the fee will be waived for any patient who thinks they may be experiencing COVID-19 symptoms. After requesting an appointment, a virtual care provider will contact the patient once they are available. A response reportedly takes about 15 to 30 minutes, but in high demand areas it might take longer.
"Virtual urgent care visits are one way we will help patients with COVID-19 symptoms assess their options for treatment or testing," said Richard Carvolth, M.D., Chief Physician Executive, Dignity Health Sacramento Region. "Virtual visits allow for timely care delivery without putting other patients or our clinicians at risk for contracting the virus. And while it’s not intended to replace in-person care visits, it will help reduce patient volumes at care sites so we can serve those who need care the most."
Symptoms of COVID-19 include a low-grade fever, a cough, or shortness of breath.