I had an unusual experience today. My mother, who is 91 lives on her own but has several personal support workers visit her through the day to help her with medicine and meals, etc. She does not wish to live in a Senior’s facility, and so we are doing our best to accomodate her.
Every time she gets a cold, it quickly becomes bronchitis and then pneumonia. So today when I visited I was disappointed to hear a deep cough. Her doctor could not make an appointment to see her until next week. My mother did not wish to go to the walk in clinic, I could not find a house call doctor (although I have seen ads for them), and her pharmacist can’t dispense medications without a doctor’s prescription.
While searching for a solution, I came across an App called GetMaple – which is available now across Canada. I worried that it was a scam, but I was desperate to try something. (Generally if a cough doesn’t get looked after quickly, she gets worse, ends up in an ambulance and then off the hospital for a few days). In Canada we are fortunate that most of the costs are covered by provincial health insurance – but just the same, it’s traumatic and hard on a 91 year old woman to get carted off to the hospital and wait alone in a room with sick people.
So I loaded the GetMaple App, signed myself and my mother up, paid a $49 fee (it didn’t ask for any health insurance information), and then I was in an online chat with a physician, who asked some questions (fever, trouble breathing, etc.) and then diagnosed bronchitis and created a prescription which was sent to the pharmacy of my choice. I called the pharmacist to review my mother’s medication history and allergies, and picked up the prescription within an hour of getting the App.
I’m happy that we were able to do this, as it was less disruptive to my mother – and more timely than any other solution. I’m still a little bit in shock that this exists, but I would definitely use it again for simple health care issues. https://www.getmaple.ca/