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Sparrow Eaton Hospital offers virtual health during pandemic

Kimberly Friar, M.D.
Posted at 1:35 PM, Jul 20, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-20 13:35:44-04

CHARLOTTE, Mich. — Eric McGill of Charlotte is a busy man, with a small business and young children, so he’s a big fan of Sparrow Eaton Hospital’s Virtual Health services, which allow him to receive care from a physician by phone or video.

“I could do this from my office, I can keep working,” said McGill, who sees his doctor every 90 days to renew a prescription for a chronic condition. “I don’t have to shut down everything, drive over there, and wait in the waiting room. My time is really valuable. It’s not like someone else picks up my work.”

McGill is part of a wave of patients turning to virtual health, especially in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. Sparrow Eaton now offers telephone and video visits at all primary care offices and most specialty care offices.

Sign-up is easy through MySparrow. You may sign up at any time by visiting Sparrow.org/MySparrow or ask about it at your physician’s office.

McGill said his telephone visit covered everything normally done in an in-person trip to his doctor’s office and that his physician, Kimberly Friar, M.D., was “fantastic” in covering all the bases.

“Most patients have been extremely appreciative of having that access to care,” Dr. Friar said.

She said some find it easier to see a doctor by video or phone, especially in this era of social distancing and when they have to navigate child care for their kids.

She cautions that telephone and video visits are an excellent tool but not suitable in all cases. Some patients should be seen in-person by a physician, depending on their needs. A family physician for 20 years, Dr. Friar sees virtual health as a reality for the future.

McGill agrees.

“I think it absolutely serves a purpose for a lot of situations. I think it’s very valuable.”

Check out other Health related articles in our Yes to Healthy Living section of our website.

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