Patients turn to telemedicine amid Arctic blast

Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — You’ve heard the advice from experts on everything from weather to medicine: Stay inside.

It’s that strong recommendation that has given telemedicine in West Michigan a boost this week. That includes Spectrum Health’s service MedNow, which allows you to talk to a doctor face-to-face without traveling to an office or hospital.

Since a storm hit West Michigan Monday, MedNow physicians have seen more than 300 patients. They saw 90 on Wednesday morning alone.

“You have the opportunity to be seen in the comfort of your own home. Everyone is telling us to stay inside and this allows to you to receive the care you need but still remain inside,” Joe Brennan, the senior director of MedNow, said.

Spectrum has been keeping track of what that means for its patients and says the online appointments have saved people from commuting 2,250 miles on slippery, dangerous roads.

 “Our growth continues to happen month over month, but it’s situations like this where it’s apparent telehealth is the most convenient way to access care,” Brennan said.

He urged people to download that app now so that when you are sick or hurt, you’ll be signed up and ready to schedule your online appointment.

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