Visiting Your Doctor Online Is a Virtual Reality

Technologies that let patients consult with physicians via the Web are spreading rapidly.

Video: Health Insurance Basics

Video: Health Insurance Basics

By SHARE

Besides bringing care directly to patients, these and other telehealth technologies have the appeal of slowing the upward spiral in the nation's healthcare bill. "Given the economic crisis that we're in," says Jay Sanders, president emeritus of the American Telemedicine Association, "we're dramatically reducing costs." These technologies are unlikely to replace office or hospital visits entirely, says Sanders. But they are tools physicians can add to an evolving "electronic black bag," as he calls it—the updated equivalent of the battered leather case brought along on house calls in a bygone age.