Does it feel like everyone around you is sick? That’s because they are.
Activity for respiratory illness—which includes COVID-19, flu and RSV—is high or very high in 37 of the United States, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports. In fact, the number of U.S. flu cases during the first week of January was 80% higher compared with the same time last year, Walgreens Flu Index data shows.
Fortunately, a brand you know and trust is here to help. In October, Walgreens debuted a virtual healthcare platform.
"Walgreens Virtual Healthcare is an on-demand, patient-centered digital platform providing fast, affordable and convenient access to experienced clinicians for common health needs. And there’s no appointment needed,” says Walgreens Chief Medical Officer Dr. Sashi Moodley. “Our transformative approach empowers individuals to take charge of their health with ease, providing virtual consultations, timely care and affordability, setting us apart in the healthcare landscape."
So if you have a cough you just can’t kick, Walgreens Virtual Healthcare can connect you with a doctor or nurse practitioner via chat or video, so you can ask any questions you might have and get a prescription if you need one.
“In addition to making it easier to access the care you need when you need it, Walgreens Virtual Healthcare is another way we can help relieve strain on the U.S. healthcare system and healthcare professionals by lessening the need for in-person visits for minor illnesses and easing the burden on providers,” Moodley says.
Here are some answers to frequently asked questions about Walgreens Virtual Healthcare to see if it might be an option for you the next time you aren’t feeling well:
Who can use Walgreens Virtual Healthcare?
Walgreens Virtual Healthcare is currently available to treat adult patients over age 18 in nine states: California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Michigan, Nevada, North Carolina, Ohio and Texas. These states encompass nearly half of the U.S. population and nearly half of Walgreens pharmacy customers.
While Walgreens plans to expand the reach of its virtual healthcare platform over time, the company is also testing out additional telehealth solutions in other parts of the county. For example, Walgreens is partnering with CityMD to offer some of its Duane Reade pharmacy patients in New Jersey and New York on-demand virtual urgent care visits.
Do I need an appointment, and how quickly can I talk to a doctor or provider?
There's no need to make an appointment. Patients can submit a Walgreens Virtual Healthcare visit request 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Most visits start within 15 minutes of a visit request.
What types of health needs can Walgreens Virtual Healthcare address?
In addition to providing on-demand medical care for respiratory illnesses, Walgreens Virtual Healthcare also offers treatment for some of the most common health needs, including:
Medication refill for high blood pressure
More treatment areas are set to be added this month.
If I get a prescription, do I need to fill it at a Walgreens?
You can fill your prescription at your preferred pharmacy of choice, including Walgreens pharmacy and same-day prescription delivery. You can also take advantage of Walgreens Rx Savings Finder to find the lowest price on a medication at Walgreens.
How much does an appointment cost?
Visits range from $33 to $75, and you can pay with credit card, debit card, HSA or FSA. At this time, insurance is not accepted for Walgreens Virtual Healthcare visits, but it can be used to cover the cost of prescriptions.
See a healthcare provider through Walgreens Virtual Healthcare today by going to walgreens.virtualhealthcare.com.
*The launch date for urgent care in Michigan is not determined yet.