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December 05, 2017 06:18 PM

AveraNow: Health Care Anywhere

Sioux Falls, SD

When you get sick, leaving your home to visit a doctor may seem like the last thing you want to do.  Or if you're on vacation and can't get to your regular provider, you may feel desperate. 

"It was fast. It was convenient. I didn't have to make an appointment. I didn't have to drag my children to a clinic full of germs," patient Brenna Furry said. 

While Furry was out to lunch, she noticed she was having a skin reaction. 

"I was able to step away into a private bathroom, speak with a provider, who was able to diagnose my dermatological reaction I was having," Furry said. 

That's thanks to Avera's service, AveraNow. 

By simply downloading the service to your smart phone, tablet or laptop, you can easily speak with a provider. 

"It's a really great process and I think the more we get into it the more we will use it. We want to talk about quality, too," Dr. Jason Knutson with Avera Health said.  

The service has been around for two years and Knutson predicts that more patients will begin using it. 

"The numbers will be flat like the bottom part of a hockey stick, and then all of a sudden the numbers will ramp up. In the beginning, we had more numbers than what we were expecting but we are starting to see the big uptick in numbers," Knutson said. 

Users should keep in mind that this won't eliminate all of your doctor visits. 

AveraNow is meant to help you monitor ongoing health risks, but it should not be substituted for your regular provider visits.

"The last thing that we wanted was this to be an antibiotic factory where people would call and we just give them an antibiotic. I think it's important not to do that," Knutson said. 

But for common illnesses, such as a sore throat or pink eye, the app could help you out in a pinch.

To create your own Avera Now account, click here.

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