Dispatch Health adds app to digital house call service, promises video visits in the future

By Jonah Comstock
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Dispatch HealthDispatch Health is adding an iOS app to its mobile house call service, which currently offers its service through local municipal services providers. For the first time with the new app, consumers will be able to request care from Dispatch Health directly, bringing the company more in-line with similar providers like Pager or Heal.

Denver, Colorado-based Dispatch Health maintains a fleet of cars staffed by acute care clinicians and equipped with a CLIA-certified lab, medical equipment, medications and IVs, and WiFi connectivity. When patients contact Dispatch Health, the company uses an algorithm to vet them and determine whether they can help. The startup focuses on treatable acute conditions including urinary tract infections, dehydration, minor fractures, asthma, constipation, nosebleeds, nausea, vomiting, or lacerations. The company accepts most local insurance, including Medicare and Medicaid, and will treat uninsured patients for a flat fee of $195.

While Dispatch Health has remained focused on its hometown of Denver, the company is casting a wide net in terms of how it makes its services available to Denverites. The company works with 911 dispatchers, with the local fire department, and with health systems and senior care facilities. In October, the company announced a partnership with Centura Health to help treat some of the health system's patients. 

For now, the app is just a way to request help from Dispatch Health, which patients can also do by calling a phone number. The patient can input their address and phone number and a list of symptoms, and Dispatch Health will send someone to help. The app tells the patient who's coming and how far away they are.

The FAQ on Dispatch Health's website offers some hints about future functionality of the app, saying that "DispatchHealth will soon offer the ability to access our practitioners via secure messaging, phone and, in the future, telemedicine to assist with health questions and care navigation." An Android app is also coming soon, according to a statement from the company.