Excellus pushes telemedicine as alternative to ER for minor illnesses

From Syracuse:

The area’s largest health insurer says its members can save money getting medical care for minor ailments over their phones or computers instead of going to hospital emergency rooms.

Excellus BlueCross BlueShield kicked off a campaign today to promote the use of telemedicine. Beginning Jan. 1 Excellus members will be able to access telemedicine providers through the insurer’s website. Excellus has teamed up with MDLIVE, a national telemedicine company, to provide this service.

Because telemedicine is significantly less expensive than ERs and urgent care centers it is an attractive alternative for cost-conscious consumers in high-deductible plans, said Jim Reed, regional president of Excellus.

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