BU Dermatology at BMC is a medical app that lets patients consult with dermatologists at Boston Medical Center by securely uploading photographs of the skin condition; the service is being offered in conjunction with DermatologistOnCall.com.
Boston Medical Center provides two online methods of obtaining these virtual visits, which are not covered by insurance. They can either download the medical app or create an account on the medical center’s web site. BMC points out that it only offers dermatological care for non-emergent conditions. Each online visit costs $79. The fee includes a diagnosis, a personalized treatment plan, and routing of the patient’s prescription to their pharmacy electronically.
Boston Medical Center’s dermatology department also says that once the online consultation has been completed, patients can expect to receive their diagnosis within 3 business days but typically in less than 24 hours. They can also obtain advice from the dermatologist for up to a month regarding the condition. If, on the other hand, a skin biopsy or other in-office procedure is required, the patient will need to schedule an appointment at the Center, which will entail additional costs. These costs, however, may be covered by third party payers. Currently the online service is only available to Massachusetts residents because the physicians providing the service are only licensed to practice in that state.
DermatologistonCall.com, which says it is the largest online network of dermatologists in the United States, can fill the needs of patients who do not live in Massachusetts, with services offered in California, Colorado, Washington, DC, Connecticut, Georgia, Kansas, Maryland, Montana, New York, New Jersey and several other states.
Despite their popularity, online dermatology services have received some bad press in recent months. A report published in JAMA Dermatology, for instance, raises concerns about the quality of care provided by some of these services.
BU Dermatology at BMC