Maple is a telemedicine platform in Canada that connects patients with doctors in under two minutes.
Covid-19 guidelines in Canada include curfews, travel restrictions, and social distancing. The heavy burden on the healthcare system due to the pandemic combined with the strict guidelines is changing the way people access primary care with more use of telemedicine. Telemedicine is not a new concept, but the pace of adoption has been rapid, thanks to its ability to provide healthcare services to patients without risking exposure to the virus.
Maple is a telemedicine platform that has been operating in Canada since 2016. They make it easy for people to connect with a doctor for a video call or text consultation in under two minutes. These can be for acute or long-term problems, mental health and sexual health. The service is available 24 hours a day, and nine out of ten issues can be resolved virtually.
When a patient wants to talk to a doctor, they fill out a quick assessment form on Maple. A doctor is assigned almost immediately and reviews the request to make sure the concerns are appropriate for a telemedicine consultation. If the doctor feels they can help, the appointment begins. Patients can submit media over the chat that may help provide a diagnosis, such as pictures of the affected areas. The doctor can provide advice, diagnose the concern, and send an electronic prescription to a pharmacy of the patient’s choice or even a sick note through the app.
The availability and cost of services vary depending on the patient’s location but start at 49 dollars. Maple is also covered under some private insurance plans.