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Amwell is a digital healthcare platform that offers doctor consultations, other medical guidance, and prescriptions. It also provides urgent care advice and psychiatry services.
This article describes Amwell in detail, including what it offers, how much it costs, and some pros and cons. It also looks at how Amwell compares with its competitors and answers some common questions.
Please note that the writer of this article has not tried these products. All information presented is purely research-based and was correct at the time of publication.
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Amwell is a digital healthcare brand. Customers can consult doctors and receive prescriptions via its platform.
The company says that it offers treatment for more than 50 common health considerations, ranging from infections and acne to Alzheimer’s. It also says it offers birth control and urgent care guidance.
Some upsides of using Amwell include:
- Accessibility: Logging on to the Amwell portal may be more convenient and accessible than making a doctor’s appointment.
- Choice: When more than one suitable doctor is available, a person can choose who to consult.
- Communication: A live video call option is available for doctor visits. This may be more suitable than using chat.
- Privacy: The company says it uses secure data transfers and complies with the
Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996. This means that all health data, including video calls with doctors, are handled securely and confidentially.
- Coverage: The company accepts health insurance payments, including payments from UnitedHealthcare.
Some downsides include:
- Cost: Each doctor appointment costs at least $79, not including the cost of treatment. Certain types of consultation cost more.
- Applicability: Amwell says that its services are not suitable for people with serious or life threatening conditions.
- Limits to prescriptions: The company says it adheres to legal restrictions about which medications a doctor can prescribe online, including those for controlled substances.
- Age restrictions: Amwell does not offer psychiatric treatment to people younger than 18.
People who do not need medical attention for serious conditions but would like to consult a doctor may find Amwell suitable. The doctors can issue some prescriptions and conduct routine health checks.
Some of the conditions that Amwell’s team can help with include:
- eye care
Amwell says that its service is not suitable for people seeking treatment for cancer or heart attacks, for example. However, a person can get second opinions about some serious health conditions.
The company also says that its service is not appropriate for people with suicidal thoughts or behaviors.
First, a person needs to create an account by providing personal details. A person can also set up insurance coverage at this stage.
Next, a person chooses which doctor to consult, based on the doctor’s experience and ratings.
Once a person makes a selection, they can start the virtual visit immediately using live video or chat. All of this is available on a desktop or via a mobile app.
Among other options, the company provides:
- Urgent care: This is for people with conditions such as allergies, acne, cold sores, or urinary tract infections.
- Therapy: This includes therapy for depression and panic attacks, as well as couples counseling.
- Psychiatry: These services include care and medication for people with anorexia, anxiety disorders, depression, or bipolar disorder.
- Breastfeeding support: A person can get help for common issues such as thrush and sore nipples, as well as guidance about returning to work.
- Nutrition counseling: This is appropriate for people with diabetes or vitamin deficiencies, for example, as well as for people interested in weight loss.
- Pediatrics: This includes treatments and guidance about issues such as ear pain, rashes, and bronchitis.
- Women’s health: This includes care for sexually transmitted infections and vulvodynia, for example, as well as guidance and prescriptions for birth control. However, an online consultation may not be suitable for people who may need physical examinations to investigate bleeding between periods or yeast infections.
- Second opinions: Amwell states that it is not a suitable platform for people with serious illnesses. However, a person can get a virtual second opinion from a specialist about a variety of severe conditions, including cancer, and about surgery and other high-risk treatments.
The cost depends on the type of service a person chooses. For example, a person can expect to pay up to $129 for a therapy session, $279 for an initial psychiatry session, and $109 for follow-up sessions.
The most expensive Amwell service is the second opinion service, which costs around $1,850.
Amwell accepts insurance from a wide range of providers, including Cigna and Affinity.
On TrustPilot, Amwell has a rating of 2.9 stars out of 5, based on more than 2,000 reviews. Positive reviews mention that the service was useful, especially during lockdowns.
Negative reviews cite a wide range of issues, including slow service, slow prescription delivery, and prescriptions not arriving at the pharmacy of choice. Some customers also report being charged twice.
On the website of Better Business Bureau, which has not accredited the company, Amwell has a 1 out of 5 star rating based on three reviews.
The bureau says that Amwell received 63 complaints over 3 years and closed 23 of them. Customers reported problems with payment, refunds, and customer support, as well as insurance refusal.
Here is how Amwell compares with some of its competitors.
|Amwell||Lemonaid||Doctor on Demand||Betterhelp|
|Price starts from||$79||$25||$75||$60 per week|
|Live video chat||yes||yes||yes||yes|
|Insurance||yes||only for prescriptions||yes||no, with some exceptions|
|Treatment services||urgent care, women’s health, and others||urgent care, men’s health, women’s health, and skin||urgent care, mental health, preventive health, chronic care||psychology|
In 2020, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported a
Current research suggests that online therapy can be beneficial, although research into its accessibility and effectiveness is still fairly limited.
A 2020 study notes that the advantages of online therapy include lower costs, no waitlists, and no travel.
To get started, a person needs to start creating an account on the Amwell platform, first by selecting their insurance provider. A person can then see the telehealth options available to them.
A person then completes their account by submitting their personal information.
Here are answers to some common questions about Amwell.
Is Amwell right for me?
Amwell is not suitable for everyone, and the company is open about what health conditions it cannot deal with.
For instance, it does not provide services for people with many serious health conditions or those who need physical examinations.
It is also worth noting that the cost can be very high. It is important to consider healthcare needs, coverage, and budgeting before signing up to use Amwell.
How much does Amwell cost per visit?
The cost depends on the service a person needs. For example, customers can expect to pay around $79 for urgent care appointments.
What types of therapy does Amwell provide?
A person can access psychiatry services for anorexia, anxiety disorders, bipolar disorder, depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, insomnia, and other conditions.
Amwell is a telehealth company. It may suit people who require quick access to a doctor for certain reasons, such as for nutrition-related, psychiatric, or pediatric care.
Reviews are varied, and many report problems with customer service and payment.
A person cannot use Amwell for health emergencies, conditions that require a physical examination, or serious conditions, such as cancer. Also, a person cannot get some prescriptions online, and there is an age limit for some services.