Sick leave issues are different and complex. ‘Sick leave’ delays work, leads to poor production and causes projects to fall behind schedule. Additionally, sick leave, or a day off for doctors visit, are the most abused benefits everywhere with employees thinking they can just make up medical excuses to be absent from work.
With the current global economic situation, employers can’t afford to have workers call in sick or missing work to sit in a doctor’s office for hours and then wait in the pharmacy for what seems like an eternity for a prescription. To improve the situation, business owners can start virtual doctor visits for their employees.
The “virtual doctor visit”, a boon for employers, is a relatively new concept that enables employees to consult a doctor right from the office on an internet-based technology such as webcam-equipped computer, and chat/IM. The virtual doctor visits are offered by MeMD, a growing Scottsdale, Arizona online health care service.
MeMD is offering on-demand medical care for companies and consumers in 19 states. With availability of secure Internet connection, employees with common ailments are connected with local urgent care doctors and medical providers. If a prescription is required, the physician can email a copy to the patient’s pharmacy . Online physicians can treat common aliments like cold, flu, allergies, nausea/vomiting, sunburns, sinus infections, sore throats, rashes etc. However, for a condition that requires you to show different parts of your body, then the traditional doctors visit may be the only option!
‘Does this really work?’, you ask. Employers who provide workers this on-demand medical care typically see a $400 reduction in annual healthcare costs per employee. The service can be used as a supplement for insured employees, or as a medical discount benefit to employees with no health insurance coverage.
MeMD also benefits doctors. The use of modern technology equipments like tablet PCs, digital records, information sharing devices within doctor’s offices, allows the physician to do simple things that previously had to be referred to a more expensive clinic. The virtual doctor visits enable remote patients to access basic healthcare. With efficient Internet-based system for disease management, doctors don’t waste the money on infrastructure and they can take advantage of available communication.
So, while we will never see the end of the ‘Sick Day’ or the last minute call stating ‘I won’t be in today’, there are certainly services available worth looking at that can help to alleviate the problem and the halt in production it may cause your business.