Coronavirus: Virtual health care app connects Saskatchewan residents with doctors

A Saskatchewan company is behind an app connecting residents with doctors and nurses via virtual healthcare for free.
A virtual healthcare app is returning after being discontinued in December 2021 and this time will be in a new partnership with the Sask. government. Screen grab / Lumeca Health

A Saskatchewan company is partnering with the province to connect residents with doctors and nurses through virtual health care.

Lumeca is an online app which functions like a walk-in clinic, linking users to health care professionals over video chat.

According to Lumeca’s website, once someone submits a consultation request, a doctor or nurse is assigned within minutes.

READ MORE: Coronavirus: Saskatchewan exploring antibody testing for the future

“In the past three weeks, we’ve had more than 3,300 consultations,” said Tyson Liske, Lumeca’s vice-president of marketing and communications.

“A majority of those people we were able to help keep them safe and at home. Not having to go to the ER or walk-in clinic, but to be able to be cared for in their home in a safe way.”

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Liske said the app is a good option for someone who suspects they have COVID-19 symptoms, general health consultations or prescription renewals.

READ MORE: Coronavirus: Developing a rapid COVID-19 test is in the works in Canada, globally

“It gives different pathways for people to be able to access care,” Liske said.

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“Any Saskatchewan resident with a valid health card can use it for free, have a video consultation — they can upload photos… describe symptoms and be able to go back and forth with physicians as well.”

Since the pandemic, Liske said thousands are now taking advantage of virtual health care.

The hope is that Lumeca will take the load off the 811 health line which has seen a large increase in calls during the pandemic.

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Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:

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Health officials caution against all international travel. Returning travellers are legally obligated to self-isolate for 14 days, beginning March 26, in case they develop symptoms and to prevent spreading the virus to others. Some provinces and territories have also implemented additional recommendations or enforcement measures to ensure those returning to the area self-isolate.

Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.

To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying home as much as possible and maintaining a distance of two metres from other people if you go out.

For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, click here.

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