Telemedicine in Hong Kong: All You Need to Know
14th September 2022
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Need to see a doctor but don't want to risk venturing outside? Want to get a prescription refilled but you're in quarantine? Don't worry, our team has compiled a list of medical providers in Hong Kong that offer telemedicine services (over-the-phone and video consultations) so you can get the medical attention you need, without needing to go outside.
Most medical centers still accept patients for face-to-face consultations but patients will need to be screened first. If they present certain symptoms and are deemed a COVID-19 health risk they will instead be given a phone consultation, if available. Phone consultations will generally last about 15 minutes and cost the same amount as an in-person consultation would.
Here are some of the clinics offering phone and video consultations.
Private clinics offering telemedicine in Hong Kong
Services offered: Depending on the needs and the doctor — phone or video (Skype) consultation.
Additional information: You can receive your prescription over email as well as have your insurance papers signed.
Services offered: Depending on needs and the doctor — phone or video.
Additional information: You can receive a prescription and pick it up at a pharmacy near you or have a person pick it up for you (if you are in quarantine). You can also have your insurance papers signed over email.
Services: Phone consultation.
Additional information: The clinic no longer accepts walk-in appointments until further notice. You can receive a prescription over the phone but someone needs to come and pick it up. You can email your insurance papers.
Tsim Sha Tsui
Services: depending on needs — they offer over the phone, video (WeChat or WhatsApp) and online appointments.
Additional information: You can receive your prescription over email and email your insurance papers.
Private hospitals offering telemedicine (video consultations) in Hong Kong
As hospitals rely on patient visits as the majority of their intake, phone consultations are more limited in these facilities. They will most likely require you to be a patient with them first and after that phone consultations are at the doctor's discretion. As for the prescription of controlled substances, patients will need to come in.
That being said, one of Hong Kong's most well-known private hospitals, Matilda Hospital now offers online consultations.
Cost: HK$160 for the first video call, further video consultation with the GP: $590, $380 (for Matilda Clinic - Caine Road)
Services: Video consultation with resident doctor or psychologist.
Additional information: Appointment bookings can be made, and paid for, using this link. Prescriptions can also be done by online consultation and then be delivered to you (fees apply for delivery).
Health insurance plans that provide free telemedicine
As health insurance companies deal with the pandemic, some insurers in Hong Kong are providing free telemedicine doctor consultations to their members. Whether you are worried about having COVID-19 or have other medical concerns, you can speak to a doctor from the comfort of your home. Here are some examples of the different telemedicine programs available.
For an initial 90 day period, Aetna members have free access to vHealth — a global service that provides medical consultations by telephone or by video call, from anywhere in the world. The 24/7 service is completely confidential, available in multiple languages and free to use as often as you like.
All APRIL Hong Kong clients have access to a 24/7 teleconsultation service available on their Easy Claim app. April also provides a Coronavirus direct line to support its clients during the outbreak. Teledoc Health has opened a free Coronavirus hotline: +852 3756 4618. Available 9pm–6 pm (HK), Monday to Friday in English and Cantonese (outside working hours, members are free to use our 24/7 callback service on Easy Claim).
Cigna provides a free Global Telehealth service for medical support and advice whenever you need it. Features of this service include:
- Access to 110+ board-certified doctors with ranging specialisms
- Video and telephone consultations with doctors, nurses and healthcare specialists
- Real-time appointment scheduling
- Convenient alternative to doctor or clinic visits
- Initial assessments for COVID-19
*Please note that given the current circumstances, procedures in medical facilities are subject to quick changes, so it is always best to call ahead of time.
How Alea can help you save on insurance
How does telemedicine work?
Telemedicine allows your doctor to communicate with you even miles away using telecommunication technologies, namely via phone calls, video chats or even text messages. That way, you can get a doctor consultation without having to visit a doctor in person — saves time and minimizes the risk of infection especially during times of the pandemic.
Are telemedicine covered by health insurance?
In midst of the pandemic, some insurers open up telemedicine options for their members for free. Aetna, April and Cigna are just a few insurance companies that offer such options in Hong Kong via their mobile app.
Can I get medicine prescriptions with telemedicine?
At some service providers, the doctor will send you your prescription online for you to get the medicines at a pharmacy, or offer drug delivery service at an additional fee.
Check with your clinic/hospital for their arrangements.
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This article was independently written by Alea and is not sponsored. It is informative only and not intended to be a substitute for professional advice and should never be relied upon for specific advice.