Friday’s Back to School Healthcare Guide
Yep, it’s that time of year again. Summer is winding down. School’s just around the corner.
Whether your kids will be learning virtually or going to the classroom, we want to make sure you know your Friday health plan has you covered when and where you need it.
Know your go-to options for non-emergency illnesses and injuries
With every Friday health plan, you have a bunch of quality options for when your little one has a minor health hiccup. These are your main options for all non-emergency illnesses:
Use a free doctor visit (most Friday plans have three of them per kid, per year)
Yep, each one of your kids gets three free annual visits with the pediatrician. Have a free visit in the bag and your kid’s feeling under the weather? Schedule an appointment and visit your pediatrician, for free. (Not available on the Bronze HSA plan.)
Talk to a doctor with Teladoc for free
We’ve said if before and we’ll say it again: Teladoc is the easiest and fastest way to get remote care from a medical professional for non-emergency illnesses like sinus problems, respiratory infection, allergies, urinary tract infection, the cold, and flu symptoms.
As an extra benefit with every Friday health plan, you can speak to a doctor online or over the phone for a $0 with Teladoc. If you are working from home and helping your kid with the virtual classroom, Teladoc makes it easy to get medical advice without having to leave your home.
Know your COVID-19 coverage, including $0 vaccines
We’ve taken several steps to ensure you are supported and can access needed care during the ongoing COVID-19 threat by including $0 COVID-19 testing, treatment, and vaccines on all plans.
If you are feeling sick, please consult your doctor over the phone or connect with a doctor through Teladoc.
Access more COVID-19 resources and updates through the CDC.
Visit an in-network urgent care
Across our service areas, we have a strong network of conveniently located urgent care centers. Many plans have a $75 copay (flat fee) to visit the urgent care*. Find one that is closest to you!
Get those peepers checked for free
Every Friday health plan comes with a free annual WellVision exam for kids (18 and under). Notice your kid squinting or tilting their head while reading or looking at their phone? It’s probably time to set up that exam.
Simply visit vsp.com, find a close and convenient eye doctor (they’re all in-network), and schedule an appointment. It’s that easy.
Be sure to check in with your eye doctor about what COVID-19 polices are in place and make sure you are comfortable before going to your appointment.
Know the difference between the ER and urgent care
Serious or life-threatening injuries or illnesses that require immediate attention or a specific level of care are emergencies. Sore throats or extreme paper cuts are not.
If your child is experiencing a life-threatening emergency, then head to the closest emergency room STAT (Friday covers you at any ER in a true emergency). This could be the most costly option, but if your kid’s life (or yours!) is in danger, you must get care immediately.
Here are a few of the symptoms that are best evaluated in an emergency room:
- Persistent chest pain, especially if it radiates to your arm or jaw or is accompanied by sweating, vomiting or shortness of breath
- Difficulty breathing
- Any severe pain, particularly in the abdomen or starting halfway down the back
- Sudden clumsiness, loss of balance or fainting
- Sudden difficulty speaking, or trouble understanding speech
- Sudden weakness or paralysis, especially on one side of the face or body
- Severe heart palpitations
- Sudden, severe headache
- Broken bones or dislocated joints
- Deep cuts that require stitches — especially on the face — or a large open wound that won’t stop bleeding
- Head or eye injuries
- Severe flu or cold symptoms
- High fevers or fevers with rash
- Severe and persistent vomiting or diarrhea
- Serious burns
The cost of ER tests, scans, and other healthcare services can be MUCH higher than they would be at other medical providers, because they are there to save lives. The average cost of an emergency room visit is $1,233.
If it’s a sore throat or stomach bug in the late hours of the night, you know your options. Teladoc is open 24/7, 365 days a year, an urgent care is open first thing in the morning, and your primary doctor’s office is open five days a week.
Buyer beware of freestanding emergency rooms
You may have seen these individual buildings in your neighborhood with a local hospital name. They look like clinics, but they are actually emergency rooms that charge emergency room prices. If you’re not careful, a visit to a free-standing ER for your kid’s ear infection could cost you thousands of dollars (compared to a $75 urgent care visit, a $0 Teladoc call, or a free doctor visit).
Bottom line: be sure to ask if the facility is a free- standing emergency room with emergency room prices. If it is and you’re not in a life-threatening situation, make the smart choice and head out to the urgent care center, primary care doctor or call Teladoc.
Are your kids up to date on their shots and vaccines?
All Friday health plans have access to a wide-range of vaccines to help keep your kid in ship-shape year-round. You can get these done at your pediatrician’s office or through a Friday pharmacy.
- Hepatitis A
- Hepatitis B
- Herpes Zoster
- Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
- Influenza (flu shot)
- Varicella (Chickenpox)
As always, if you have any questions about your child’s plan, benefits, or services, please email our Friday Care Crew at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’re here to help!