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Aetna debuts phone consultations for non-urgent care in Texas and Florida Posted: February 24th, 2011

By Maryalene LaPonsie

As part of a growing trend toward providing consumers with alternate means of health care, Aetna is now providing members in Texas and Florida a 24-hour phone consultation service. The service, offered through Teladoc, is available to most Aetna members in fully-insured medical plans, according to a company news release.

Members can request a consultation by either calling or visiting Teladoc on the Internet. It is expected that physicians will return calls within a half hour. Consultations are available for non-urgent care such as respiratory illnesses, allergies and urinary tract infections. A summary of the consultation is captured in an electronic health record that can be shared with a primary care physician.

Cost for the service is expected to be less than $38. In addition, co-payment, deductible and other co-insurance requirements will apply. Individuals enrolled in Aetna's Medicare Advantage and Medicaid programs are not eligible to use the service.

The program is the latest attempt by the health insurance company to provide its customers with non-traditional means of managing their health. The Teladoc service joins the Aetna Mobile application, an online virtual assistant and telephonic genetic counseling as options for members to access information about their medical care.