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Hospital offers free online care

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BY AMELIA HARPER
Staff Writer

Friday, September 14, 2018

One of the most frightening aspects of a prolonged storm is knowing that medical care is less available.

However, UNC Health Care is offering a free way for North Carolina residents to access medical professionals during Hurricane Florence.

UNC Health Care announced Thursday that it will waive fees associated with its virtual care service, UNC Urgent Care 24/7. This service from UNC Health Care provides patients with real-time access to physicians by using their phone, tablet or computer.

“We are pleased to be able to offer this virtual care service through UNC. Providing free access during Hurricane Florence allows people in our community access to quality medical care from the comfort and safety of their homes,” said Dorsey Tobias, director of marketing and communications for Nash UNC Health Care.

Virtual visit fees for the service, which normally costs $49 or less depending on patient insurance, will be waived for care beginning at noon today through midnight Sunday. Patients must be physically located in North Carolina during their virtual visit as required by medical licensing regulations, a press release stated.

UNC Urgent Care 24/7 offers simple, convenient and around-the-clock care from anywhere in North Carolina for non-emergency medical issues such as allergies, coughs, fever, headaches, nausea, insect bites, pink eye, sore throat, rash, vomiting and more.

During these virtual visits, a physician connects with patients by phone or Internet through a private and secure connection. The physician can diagnose problems, recommend treatment and prescribe medications when appropriate, excluding opioids and other controlled substances, the release stated.

“Of course, for any emergent medical needs, patients should still dial 911 or come to the Emergency Department. Nash UNC Health Care remains open and able to take care of emergent medical needs of our community,” Tobias said.

The program is offered through MDLIVE, the nation’s leading provider of virtual medicine services and software.

“As we said when this service launched, the virtual technology fits with our mission of providing care to all North Carolinians at any time,” Dr. Bill Roper, CEO of UNC Health Care, said in a press release. “We believe waiving fees for UNC Urgent Care 24/7 is a concrete way for our health care system to serve North Carolinians during Hurricane Florence.”

To register and create a UNC Urgent Care 24/7 account, go to https://www.uncurgentcare247.com or visit the Apple App and Google Play stores to download the app to a smartphone or tablet. Patients should use the offer code UNCFLORENCE2018 on the website or app.

To watch a video about UNC Urgent Care 24/7, go to https://bit.ly/2NH4r3D, For more information, including frequently asked questions, go to https://bit.ly/2NI4Cf5 or call 888-909-9681.

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