GoodRx, the Californian startup best known for its pharmaceutical-cost-transparency tool, is rolling out a new feature that lets patients compare telemedicine prices and service options.
Dubbed GoodRx telehealth marketplace, users are able to select the type of condition they are looking to address. Patients can select one of 100 conditions, which run the gamut from cold and flu symptoms to erectile dysfunction, and even include COVID-19.
After the medical issue is selected, the site redirects patients to a list of telehealth services that treat that condition, along with the estimated price and pharmacy information. For example, a patient can search to see if a specific telehealth service has pharmacy pickup or medication delivery.
The startup is pitching this as a way to get care during the coronavirus pandemic.
“As Americans stay home, and with our front-line hospitals and clinics experiencing tremendous demand, we want to help people get access to services for a range of medical issues,” Doug Hirsch, co-CEO and cofounder of GoodRx, said in a statement. “Our goal with the telehealth marketplace is to give people all their options, services and prices, so they can easily get the treatment they need.”
WHY IT MATTERS
Telemedicine has seen a sharp increase in usage in the last few months as the cases of the coronavirus have spiked. Providers are pitching telemedicine as a way to provide individuals with care, while protecting themselves and the patients from new germs.
"If there are any silver linings it's that the [American Medical Association] along with many other organizations have been working for telehealth adoption for some time. Obviously it is really having its moment right now and [has been] able to step up to keep providers and patients safe on the front lines," Meg Barron, vice president of Digital Health Strategy at the American Medical Association (AMA), said during the MassChallenge coronavirus innovation summit, last week.
THE LARGER TREND
As telemedicine takes center stage, consumers and providers alike are learning more about the technology. Last week the AMA launched the Telemedicine Quick Reference Guide, aimed at helping clinicians figure out best practices for implementing the tech. The guidelines cover everything from policy and coding to implementation.
The association also kicked off a virtual panel discussion on telemedicine and COVID-19, where clinicians can give their input and share experiences.