(WWBT) - If you need a doctor, you could just open an app on your phone, fill out your symptoms, and hit send.
What if you need a doctor at your door in less than an hour? Bon Secours is teaming up with Dispatch Health to change health care in Greater Richmond.
Think of it like Uber for health care. You reach out over an app, online or on the phone, and a health care team shows up at your front door to treat you at your home.
"It allows you to evaluate the patient in a much more thorough way than you can in an institutional setting," said Aurora Hunt, a family nurse practitioner.
"We kind of call it bringing back the house call on steroids," said Kevin Riddleberger, co-founder of Dispatch Health, a company launched in Denver, Colo. in 2013. "We've partnered with Bon Secours to be able to keep people in their homes that really don't need to be in the ER."
He estimates $20 million in savings over the last two years. The program launched last week and is already seeing a little more than a dozen patients in Richmond.
"This is the future of healthcare," said Eugene Christian, chief medical officer of St. Mary's Hospital.
Bon Secours says it's a less costly way of delivering care, and it's already keeping folks out of the emergency room.
"Many of these patients don't have transportation or they're frail or elderly and for them to be able to get the care is actually very difficult. So, bringing the care to them for the right circumstances makes a lot of sense," said Bon Secours.
The team will access your symptoms over the phone to make sure you don't need to call an ambulance and go straight to the ER. This is not a service for someone having a heart attack, but the health team brings with them a lot of capabilities.
"The ability to be able to start IV's, provide IV fluids, IV antibiotics, steroids, being able to take labs on scene," said Riddleberger.
The service is from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., 7 days a week. The number to call is 804-495-0053.
Click here for the program's website.
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