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As technology has improved, an increasing number of people have been able to access healthcare via telehealth platforms. These services allow patients to connect virtually with doctors and healthcare providers for fast, convenient care.
PlushCare is a telehealth platform that provides urgent care, chronic condition treatment, prescription refills, and more. Patients can use this subscription-based service to schedule a virtual doctor appointment, get treatment recommendations, and order lab work and prescriptions.
Why We Trust PlushCare
When you choose an in-person physician or practice, there are a number of factors you consider. Selecting a telehealth service is no different. It’s important to evaluate both the pros and cons of different services, because what works for some patients may not work for others.
What we like about PlushCare
The primary pro of PlushCare is its convenience. Patients can schedule an appointment at the time that works best for them (same-day appointments are typically available), and they do not need to factor in travel or wait time.
PlushCare can be used to treat a variety of healthcare needs, including urgent and chronic conditions, prescription refills, and lab tests.
Most major health insurances, including Aetna, Cigna, and Anthem Blue Cross, are accepted by PlushCare.
Lastly, customers can try PlushCare for free for 30 days before committing to a paid membership.
Things customers should consider about PlushCare
PlushCare customers are charged a monthly membership fee of $14.99. This is in addition to the flat $99 per visit fee for non-insured patients, or copay or coinsurance costs for individuals with insurance.
Customers should also be aware that, due to laws regulating telehealth and prescription services, PlushCare’s doctors cannot write prescriptions or refills for controlled substances, including medications like Ativan, Adderall, and Xanax.
Consultations with PlushCare doctors occur via video chat, so in order for customers to use this service, they must have a computer or phone with a camera.
What Customers Are Saying About PlushCare
What customers like
“I’m very pleased with the care and attention I received from the doctor I saw — he was a real person, with genuine concern for my concern.”
“[My physician] is knowledgeable, understanding, empathetic, and everything else you need a doctor to be.”
“I was able to get a same-day appointment, which was super convenient with my work schedule. The appointment was efficient and [the doctor] set me at ease about the process with PlushCare.”
What customers don’t like
“I filled out a questionnaire, and they cancelled my appointment without even speaking to me.”
“I spoke with a physician and was charged a fee for nothing! Got no prescription and still have no way to care for the issue at hand.”
“I was utterly disappointed and disgusted by the way Plushcare agents reacted to my questions. Plushcare may promise you the world, but fails to deliver what they have promised.”
How PlushCare Works
Customers can use PlushCare through their website, or by downloading their mobile app, available for iOS and Android devices. New users join by creating a profile, or booking an appointment (users will be asked to create a profile as part of the appointment scheduling process).
PlushCare allows users to choose their physician by showing them doctors who have available appointments in the user’s chosen time frame. Same-day appointments are typically available. Prior to their appointment, patients are asked to complete a brief questionnaire about their medical history and the issue for which they are seeking care.
All appointments are conducted via a secure video chat. Patients can use their computer (PlushCare is compatible with Chrome, Firefox, and Opera browsers), or PlushCare’s mobile app on their smartphone. Members can also communicate with their care team for follow-ups via PlushCare’s unlimited messaging feature.
During the appointment, the physician will assess the patient’s needs, and make recommendations for treatment, including, if necessary, seeking in-person medical attention. PlushCare’s physicians can treat a variety of common urgent care needs, like cold and flu symptoms, sore throat, and sinus infections, as well as chronic conditions like asthma, diabetes, and hypertension.
PlushCare’s physicians can prescribe new medications, or order refills for customers. Due to telehealth regulations, they cannot order prescriptions for controlled substances like narcotics (Oxycodone, Vicodin); sleep medications (Ambian, Lunesta), and ADD/ADHD medications (Ritalin, Adderall). When a physician writes a prescription for a patient, they will order it from the patient’s local pharmacy, for convenient pick-up.
PlushCare accepts copays from most major health insurance companies for telehealth appointments. They are considered in-network for over 100 insurance plans, including Aetna, Cigna, United Healthcare, Anthem Blue Cross, and more. Patients can confirm that their health insurance covers PlushCare visits before booking an appointment. PlushCare also provides care to uninsured individuals at a flat fee of $99 per visit, plus their $14.99 per month membership fee.
Customer support through PlushCare is available via email or toll-free phone number. Customers can also manage their account, including cancelling their membership, through their profile page. Patients can change or cancel their appointment up to two hours before their appointment time at no charge. Changes within two hours of their appointment will incur a $30 late cancellation fee.
How does PlushCare select its doctors?
PlushCare’s roster of doctors includes over 100 physicians representing a variety of different experiences and specialties. All doctors are board-certified, licensed to practice in all 50 states, and are selected through a rigorous interview process.
On average, PlushCare’s doctors have 15 years of medical experiences. All of PlushCare’s doctors were trained at one of the U.S.’s top 50 medical schools, including the Yale University School of Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine, and the University of Michigan Medical School, among others.
PlushCare Pricing & Plans
PlushCare operates on a straightforward pricing model. A membership is $14.99 per month, although all users get a 30-day free trial. Up to 5 adult family members can share the same membership.
The flat fee for a visit is $99 per visit. Users who do not have health insurance will pay the full amount of this fee.
Users who have health insurance that is accepted by PlushCare will only be charged their regular copay or coinsurance for a primary care visit. Insurances accepted by PlushCare include Anthem Blue Cross, Blue Shield of California, Aetna, Cigna, and United Healthcare. PlushCare also has a copay checker feature, through which users can verify what they will be charged before they book an appointment.
PlushCare allows users to manage their subscription or cancel their membership at any time through their PlushCare account.
For customers seeking a long-term telehealth solution, PlushCare is a service worth considering.
Their team of high-quality doctors can treat a variety of acute and chronic conditions, and their platform is straightforward and easy to use. PlushCare offers patients the convenience of choosing a same-day appointment, or scheduling an appointment in advance.
While PlushCare’s membership fee may make the service cost-prohibitive for some, their partnerships with most major U.S. health insurances mean many customers will only be charged their regular copays, while saving themselves time and energy by not visiting a doctor’s office in-person.