123RF.com/Elnur Amikishiyev

Multinational virtual care provider Teladoc Inc. is launching a telemedicine service in Canada.

Employers and insurers can purchase the service, which will connect plan members with a licensed doctor in either English or French any time of the day, over the phone or on a mobile app.

“We’re proud to be helping Canadians get the right care on their terms, when and where they need it,” said Lewis Levy, Teladoc’s chief medical officer, in a press release. “People today want a better health-care experience. We’re empowering patients across Canada to confidently and easily access care.”

Read: Virtual health-care platform Dialogue acquires medical technology company

According to Statistics Canada, roughly five million Canadians over age 12 didn’t have a regular physician in 2016. Peer-reviewed journal Canadian Family Physician has also reported Canadians outside of urban centres are particularly underserved, with only eight per cent of physicians practicing in rural Canada. Among those who do have a regular doctor, many face challenges scheduling appointments on the same or next day.

Doctors on Teladoc’s service will be able to diagnose and, if necessary, prescribe medication for conditions such as the cold and flu, allergies, pink eye, urinary tract infections and upper respiratory infections.

Canadian plan members can also access the service anywhere in the United States, if they’re travelling.

Read: Virtual care among ‘dramatic change’ predicted for benefits plans in future

Copyright © 2019 Transcontinental Media G.P. Originally published on benefitscanada.com

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