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When to Use Telehealth for Kids

Image description: A mother and child have a telehealth visit at home. Protecting your little one’s health is your priority as a parent. But sometimes even a...
When to Use Telehealth for Kids
Written By: Ashley Kane on September 01, 2021

Image description: A mother and child have a telehealth visit at home.

Protecting your little one’s health is your priority as a parent. But sometimes even a routine trip to the pediatrician’s office or urgent care clinic can feel overwhelming — especially if you have other kids at home, or pressing family or work responsibilities. 

As many families have discovered during the pandemic, telehealth can come in handy in these situations. While you should always call 911 or go the nearest ER for emergencies (such as choking, broken bones, or a serious injury), telehealth visits are a convenient and effective alternative to in-person care if your child has symptoms that don’t suggest a serious problem. You can keep your child comfortable at home — away from other sick kids they might encounter at a doctor’s office — and have an online urgent care visit with a doctor from your computer, tablet, or smartphone. 

In addition to routine urgent care, telehealth visits are a great way to seek advice from a physician on next steps for your child and the level of care that’s needed. 

Using telehealth for medical advice and next steps 

As a parent, it’s natural to worry about your child when they aren’t feeling well or wonder what you should do next. Our doctors can help you navigate care, answer questions, and provide medical advice in minutes, whenever you need it. You can get the peace of mind you need and rest assured that your child is getting quality care.  

Whether you need a treatment plan for a stomach bug, aren’t sure if it’s seasonal allergies or a cold, or don’t know why your child has had a headache for days, start a visit from your smartphone. Doctors can advise you on how to care for your child, recommend whether they should skip daycare or school, and provide a sick note if needed. 

Some of the common symptoms and conditions you can use telehealth for include: 



Skin infections  

Acne, rashes, bites, and bumps — you name it. You can get these treated in minutes without leaving home. 

Simply upload a photo of the skin infection during the intake form for your child’s visit or show the doctor the concern through your device’s camera once the visit has begun. Using your smartphone might be easiest for this type of visit! 

Be sure to have any notes ready about when the issue began and relevant information, such as whether your family recently spent time gardening or hiking in the woods. 


Upper respiratory infections 

Whether it’s cold, COVID-19, or flu symptoms — or suspected bronchitis or pneumonia — having a telehealth visit is an easy and convenient way to get your child care when they aren’t feeling well. 

Doctors are available 24/7 so even if your child wakes up at 2 am or comes down with a sore throat on a Sunday when the doctor’s office is closed, you can have a visit with Amwell. Be prepared to tell the doctor when the symptoms started, your child’s temperature, and whether you’ve been around people who are sick. 


Conditions that often require medication 

Doctors can often treat and prescribe medication to a pharmacy near you if your child has a health issue that requires a prescription, such as an ear infection, pink eye, sinus infection, or strep throat.  

In some situations, the doctor may decide that your child’s symptoms require tests that can’t be provided via telehealth. If this is the case, your doctor will provide you with the next steps — whether it’s a recommendation to see your child’s pediatrician or visit an urgent care center in person. 

If you have devices at home, such as a thermometer or a device to look inside the ears or mouth, tell the doctor as that might assist them in making a diagnosis remotely. It’s also helpful to fill the provider in on any background — for example, if your child often gets strep throat or whether their friend just had pink eye. 


Prescription refill  

When you need a prescription refill, it can be convenient to have a quick telehealth visit. Whether it’s a renewal of an EpiPen for a food allergy or you’re on vacation and your child forgot their inhaler, see a doctor and get a short-term refill sent to a pharmacy near you.  

If you’re using Amwell from a state outside of your home, make sure you update your current location under “Settings” before your telehealth visit so a board-certified doctor licensed in the area can help you.   


Preparing for your child’s visit 

One of the best things about a telehealth visit is that you can have your online pediatrician visit wherever your child is most comfortable. No more calming their nerves in the waiting room! Here are some tips to make the visit successful: 

  • Depending on your child’s age, you might find it’s easiest to have a visit from your laptop or computer. Holding a phone and your child at the same time or letting your child control the video can be tough!  
  • Make sure the area is well-lighted. You can have a visit from anywhere, even from the couch or bedroom. Just try to light up the room as the doctor will use video to determine a diagnosis. 
  • Have your child’s health history ready. If your child takes any medications, tell the doctor so they’re aware. 
  • If your child has been feeling sick for a few days, make a list of their symptoms and when they started so you can tell the doctor.  
  • It’s a good idea to ensure you’re connected to Wi-Fi or internet before your visit.  

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