Going to the clinic or hospital to see a doctor for a common cold or flu? You're spending valuable time and energy. You are not alone. Every single day an average of 32,000 Singaporeans sacrifice the time to travel to a doctor and wait in a waiting room full of sick people. You don't have to be one of them. Skip the queue, the doctor will come to you.
Missing: classic Singaporean efficiency and pragmatism
In 2014, the Ministry of Health (MOH) conducted a survey on the state of primary care in Singapore. Primary care is the initial approach by a patient to a medical practitioner or clinic for advice or treatment. The MOH provides a longer definition, if you're interested. The 2014 primary care report, resulting from the ministry's comprehensive survey, stated that 65% of all GP visits are for acute, likely self-limiting (i.e. can recover on its own), conditions. Examples of such conditions include upper respiratory tract infections (flu, sore throat, cough etc.), diarrhoeal diseases, and sprains.
This means there are around 32,000 sick Singaporeans each day that are spending valuable time and energy going to visit a doctor in-person when they could consult one from home and achieve the same result.
These are all conditions that aren't too serious, even though they probably cause you to feel awful, and therefore don't require much intervention on behalf of the doctor, aside from the provision of medical advice and medicine (both of which can be achieved via telemedicine). In fact, in most of these cases, you actually have a pretty good idea of what's wrong with you and don't need the doctor to tell you that. Typically, when we visit a doctor in situations like these, it is because we either want a prescription drug for symptomatic relief, or we believe we need a medical certificate to rest at home. These conditions can be handled much more efficiently over telemedicine. Depending on your circumstance, it is possible to get both a medical certificate and an online prescription via telemedicine if the doctor believes either to be an appropriate remedy.
The objective of our instant call feature is to target these acute conditions. This option of virtual care is important because patients currently have to spend the time to travel to a clinic and sit in a waiting room surrounded by other sick people before they can consult with a doctor. Technology can increase the convenience of receiving healthcare without affecting the quality of care, the safety of the patient, or the security of their personal data. It's time for patients to gain more control over their healthcare delivery.
I can see a doctor from home or work? How is this possible?
You can speak to a doctor online, right now– wherever you are! Click this link to speak to one right now. This service allows anyone in Singapore to pay a small fee to instantly consult with a Singapore doctor, via a video call from their mobile phone, laptop, or any web-enabled device.
With remote consultations, the only task at hand is feeling better. There is no need to stress about how you’re going to get to the clinic, or who is going to watch your children or pets while you’re out of the house. The focus is purely on talking to the doctor– getting healthy as quickly as possible.
Visiting a doctor in-person versus consulting one over telemedicine is usually not very different, for neither the patient nor the doctor. After all, considerable weight behind the diagnoses made for simple acute conditions by general practitioners results from the consideration of the patient’s medical history and their account of the symptoms they report during their consultation.
An experienced licensed doctor is typically quickly able to determine the severity of your condition just from speaking with you: whether that be in person or through a video consultation.
With this in mind, it seems reasonable to have your preliminary consultation at home, or wherever you are. If the online doctor thinks your condition warrants further investigation and care, they can then direct you to other services, as they would have done anyway had you consulted them in person. If you need help with knowing when to see a doctor, check this and this out
Dealing with limitations
This is not designed to replace the current healthcare system, rather, to augment it by making healthcare more accessible to the patient. If your condition is serious, or further physical examination is required, our doctors will tell you what to do to get appropriate care. Contact a doctor online. It's a convenient first line of defense that will likely help your acute condition, and if it can’t, it’ll point you in the right direction to deal with it effectively and efficiently. More information on common conditions that can be serviced can be found here.
Most Singaporeans value their time very highly and want to optimize convenience of all the services they consume, including healthcare. So enabling you to consult with a GP from your desk or sofa is just common sense. Singapore is also incredibly fortunate to have a very forward-thinking health ministry that embraces how technology can improve the lives of Singaporeans. Together we hope to deliver the most convenient and high-quality healthcare in the world.
You have a lot of things going on in your life, so don't spend time uneccesarily by traveling to the clinic or hospital and waiting with a bunch of sick people when you don’t have to.
RingMD is open to answering any questions from patients who want to know more about how telemedicine services work, and we can be contacted easily via our website. Don’t hesitate to contact us.
Speak with a doctor online on RingMD. Why leave home to find a doctor if you don't have to? Consult a doctor online, right now! When appropriate, the doctor is able to provide you with a signed Medical Certificate (MC) and/or prescription medication if they believe you need either of these remedies.
We're also focusing on increasing access to mental health care. If you're thinking "I need a therapist near me" but don't know where to start, try the RingMD therapist directory. We will help you find the right therapist for YOU!
If you're a doctor or wellness expert considering offering virtual care services, here are some arguments to consider.