Virtual health allows you to see, hear and talk to members of your health care team from your home.
Virtual health frequently asked questions
What is virtual health?
Virtual health allows your health care provider to see your health information, communicate with you, and care for you, using technology. Virtual health is used when there is a distance between yourself and your health care provider, for example, if you are at home and they are in a clinic. There are many technology tools that support virtual health and virtual care with a goal of improving your access to care, health education, and ability to link in your family and natural supports if you choose.
How can virtual health benefit me?
- Increased access to care. Often, the wait for a virtual video visit is shorter than the wait for an in-person visit. The sooner you can connect with a health care provider, the quicker you can be treated.
- Save time and money. You won't need to travel to a hospital or office, and you won't have to pay for parking, a taxi or the bus.
- Include your natural support system. Connect with your health care provider with your family by your side.
- Limit your exposure to environments outside your home.
For more information about the benefits of virtual health, please look at the Benefits of Video Visits resource.
Can I still meet with my health care provider in person?
Your opinion matters. If you prefer to meet with your health care provider in person instead of using virtual care, please discuss this with your care team.
How does a virtual video visit work?
Every health care provider or service will have a slightly different process, but in general, here is how a virtual video visit works:
- You can ask your health care provider for a virtual video visit, or they will offer one to you.
- Your health care provider will make sure that a virtual video visit is possible and appropriate for your care.
- Your health care provider will arrange a time for your first virtual video visit.
- Your health care provider will ask you for your email address or phone number connected to your device.
- This will allow them to send you instructions by email or text on how to join your virtual video visit from your device using a virtual health tool (i.e. Microsoft Teams or Zoom.) It might also include a meeting invite.
- Check your email on your computer or phone, including your junk folder, to make sure you got the information (and invite). If you did not get anything, contact your health care provider.
- Confirm the meeting by replying to the email or text. Mark the date on your calendar.
- Think of your virtual video visits as a regular appointment with your health care provider. You will be able to hear, see and talk to your health care provider. They will be able to see, hear and talk to you.
- Speak clearly and normally. You don’t need to raise your voice or shout.
- You can have a family member or friend with you, when appropriate. Please introduce them at the start of the visit.
- Sometimes technology doesn't work. We will try to prevent this. If there is a problem, we will arrange for another visit.
- If you feel the virtual video visit does not meet your needs, you can stop it at any time. You can schedule a face-to-face (or phone) visit for a later time.
How can I prepare for a virtual video visit?
Please use My Virtual Health Visit Checklist to help you prepare for a successful virtual visit with your health care provider. This checklist includes how to plan for your visit, prepare for your visit, what to do during your visit, some advice on what to do after your visit and some frequently asked questions about virtual video visits.
Virtual health tools
You can use a smartphone, tablet or personal computer with a web camera and microphone.
You will need a connection to the internet through cable, Wi-Fi, satellite, or cellular data. You are responsible for costs related to this connection.
The most common method your health care provider will communicate with you is through virtual video visits. These may take place using tools such as Microsoft Teams and/or Zoom. (Please note that the virtual health tools listed below may not be available for your virtual video visit as their availability depends on your health care provider).
Microsoft (MS) Teams is the recommended virtual tool for virtual video visits within Fraser Health. Please look at the following resources for more information on how to use MS Teams for your virtual video visit.
Zoom is a virtual tool that some providers use for virtual video visits within Fraser Health. Please look at the following resource for more information on how to use Zoom for your virtual video visit.
If you encounter any issues connecting to your Zoom Virtual Health visit, call technical support toll-free at 1-844-442-4433 from Monday to Friday between 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m., and Saturday between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.