Medically reviewed on April 4, 2023 by Jillian Foglesong Stabile, MD, FAAFP. To give you technically accurate, evidence-based information, content published on the Everlywell blog is reviewed by credentialed professionals with expertise in medical and bioscience fields.
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Telehealth—sometimes called telemedicine—connects patients with providers in a virtual setting instead of in person . But if you’ve never made an appointment with a telemedicine provider before, you might be wondering, how much is a telehealth visit with insurance?
Generally speaking, the cost of your telehealth visit will depend on :
- Your specific insurance policy, particularly: the services your policy covers; the payment structure of your policy (e.g., your copays and deductible)
- The type of telehealth appointment you make
- The telehealth service you use
In this guide, we’re exploring how all of those factors could impact your telehealth costs and what you can do to save money on virtual care services.
How much does telehealth cost on average?
How much is a telehealth visit with insurance on average? The answer depends on a variety of factors, which largely rest on how your unique insurance policy is structured. This may include:
- The services covered under your health insurance policy – Health insurance policies typically cover some or all of the cost of essential preventative care, office visits, and treatments for serious illnesses or injuries . If your insurance covers some or all of the cost of routine checkups, for example, you may not have to pay your entire bill out of pocket if you use a telehealth provider for a routine checkup.
- The payment structure of your policy – Insurance costs can be complex. Your policy may (or may not) require you to pay copays for routine services (like office visits), and these copays may or may not contribute to your deductible. Depending on your out-of-pocket maximum for the year, your deductible, your copays, and how these payments impact each other in your specific policy, you might pay your entire telehealth bill even if you have insurance coverage—or you might not have to pay anything .
- The type of telehealth appointment you make – If you make a telehealth appointment for preventative care (like a yearly checkup), and your policy covers preventative care, your policy might cover some (or all) of the costs of that telehealth visit. However, if you make a telemedicine appointment for mental health services (like a counseling session), and your policy doesn’t cover mental health services, you may have to pay some (or all) of the costs of that appointment.
- The telehealth provider you use – Your health insurance policy might cover some (or all) of the cost of seeing providers that are in-network—providers that accept your insurance, give you a discount because you’re a member of a specific health insurance company, or both . Your insurance provider may include some telehealth providers in their network—or even completely cover the costs of seeing specific telehealth providers at no cost to you. But, if you see a telemedicine provider outside of your network, you could claim this visit as an out-of-network expense (if out-of-network services are covered by your policy).
Because of these factors, there is no one answer for how much you can expect to pay for your next telehealth visit. We recommend:
- Reading your policy carefully to learn more about what your policy covers and your costs
- Asking your insurance company to verify coverage for specific providers or services before making an appointment
- Asking your potential telemedicine provider about which insurance policies they accept—and how much of the claims paperwork they’ll do on your behalf
How can you save on telemedicine visits?
After talking about your coverage with your insurance company and your telehealth provider to estimate your potential costs, you can take additional steps to save money on virtual healthcare. Let’s break down some savings tactics to consider before you schedule your next appointment.
Schedule visits with in-network providers
Whether you’re trying to save on telehealth or in-person care, you should do your best to make an appointment with a healthcare provider that’s in your health insurance network .
In-network providers may offer services (including routine video visits, treatments, testing, and other services) at a lower cost than out-of-network providers would. Since your insurance company directs many policyholders to their practice or group, in-network providers are motivated to offer services at a lower price (to you, your insurer, or both).
Use at-home test kits and virtual testing providers
If your telehealth provider (or in-person provider) recommends routine or special lab testing, you could lower your costs by utilizing two convenient testing options:
- At-home collection kits – At-home collection kits give you the chance to collect your testing samples (like saliva swabs or blood) from the comfort of your own home. Even if your policy doesn’t cover at-home collection kits, your out-of-pocket costs might still be lower than the cost of testing at a traditional, in-person lab.
- Virtual testing providers – Whether you use an at-home collection kit or provide a sample at a traditional testing facility, you could save money by discussing your results with a telehealth provider instead of an in-person healthcare provider.
Before your next routine test, ask your insurance company and your primary healthcare provider about your cost-saving options.
Connect with a telehealth provider via Everlywell
How much is a telehealth visit with insurance? Your cost could depend on factors related to your policy, your chosen telemedicine provider, or the type of telehealth services you’re looking for.
If you’re unsure how or when to use telehealth, we’re here to help. Telehealth services can be more convenient or, in some cases, less expensive than seeing an in-person primary care provider. At Everlywell, we’re all about increasing access to virtual care and routine testing. That’s why we offer access to robust online telehealth services from licensed providers and at-home testing kits.
If you’re ready to achieve health goals that work for you, schedule an appointment with a virtual healthcare provider today.
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- What is telehealth? https://telehealth.hhs.gov/patients/understanding-telehealth. Published June 29, 2022. Accessed March 7, 2023.
- Private insurance coverage for Telehealth. Private insurance coverage for telehealth. https://telehealth.hhs.gov/providers/billing-and-reimbursement/private-insurance-coverage-for-telehealth. Published January 6, 2023. Accessed March 7, 2023.
- See how health insurance coverage protects you. See How Health Insurance Coverage Protects You | HealthCare.gov. https://www.healthcare.gov/why-coverage-is-important/coverage-protects-you/. Accessed March 7, 2023.
- Your total costs for Health Care: Premium, deductible, and out-of-pocket costs. Your total costs for health care: Premium, deductible, and out-of-pocket costs. https://www.healthcare.gov/choose-a-plan/your-total-costs/. Accessed March 7, 2023.
- Health Insurance for Florida. In-network versus out-of-network. https://www.floridablue.com/answers/health-coverage-basics/in-network-versus-out-of-network. Accessed March 7, 2023.