When should I use virtual primary and urgent care?

Virtual primary and urgent care are ideal if you have a minor illness or injury that is not life-threatening. It should not be used for emergency care. The virtual appointment is scheduled through My Duke Health (previously Duke MyChart) and you must be in North Carolina. There is one exception: this service can be used if you are traveling in Virginia and have been seen at Duke Primary Care or Duke Urgent Care in the past.

Virtual visits are available 7 days a week, 8:00 am to 8:00 pm for 6 years of age and older. They are available Monday through Friday, 8:00 am to 5:00 pm for 6 months and older.

If you’re seeking virtual care outside these hours, Duke Health Anywhere offers an on-demand, virtual option. If you have a life-threatening or serious medical issue, call 911 or visit the nearest emergency room.

What illnesses can be treated during a virtual primary care and urgent care visit?

Minor symptoms, illnesses, and injuries that can be treated virtually include but are not limited to:

  • Cough
  • COVID/cold/flu symptoms
  • COVID-19 screenings 
  • Constipation
  • Dental pain/infection
  • Diarrhea
  • Insect bites
  • Itchy eyes
  • Nasal congestion
  • Pink eye
  • Post nasal drainage
  • Seasonal allergies
  • Sinus pain and congestion
  • Skin rashes, and infections
  • Sneezing
  • Sore throat
  • Urinary tract infections (Adult female only)
  • Yeast infection/Bacterial Vaginosis

Conditions and symptoms for which virtual care is not appropriate include:

  • Abdominal Pain
  • Chest Pain
  • Dizziness
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Visits requiring examination of genitals, breasts, buttocks
  • Forms (FMLA, Disability)
  • Opioid medications for Pain
  • Motor Vehicle Accident
  • Palpitations
  • Seizures
  • Severe Ear pain
  • Weakness
  • Work-related injuries

Do I have to be a Duke patient to use Duke's virtual primary and urgent care?

You do not need to be a Duke patient but you do need a My Duke Health account. Use this link to sign up if don’t have an account.

Can people of all ages use the service?

Duke's virtual primary and urgent care can be used by people ages 6 months and older.

Can I use my insurance?

Yes. A virtual primary care and urgent care visit is covered by insurance as a primary care visit. You will be responsible for any copayments.

Can I schedule an appointment in advance?

Appointments must be scheduled at least one hour in advance through your My Duke Health account.

Can I get a prescription for antibiotics?

Antibiotics can be prescribed if needed. They are effective medications to treat bacterial infections, such as urinary tract infections. However, most upper respiratory infections are caused by viruses. Treatment of viruses with antibiotics is ineffective and may put you at risk for significant side effects such as diarrhea, upset stomach, yeast infections, and allergic reactions.

In addition, unnecessary usage of antibiotics can worsen a national problem of antimicrobial resistance which may put you and others at risk for more severe infections in the future. Your provider will consider your symptoms and recommend the most appropriate and safest treatment. Antibiotics can’t safely treat flu or COVID-like symptoms.

What medications are not prescribed?

Providers will not prescribe controlled substances, muscle relaxants, medications for erectile dysfunction, or state-specific controlled medications. Refills are sometimes available, depending on your medical history and immediate need.

Will the doctor send a prescription to my pharmacy?

Providers can send most prescriptions to a pharmacy of your choice. The kinds of medications that can be prescribed include antibiotics, steroids, or cough medications.

Can I see my doctor?

If you want to make an appointment to see your doctor, please use My Duke Health to schedule, or call their office directly. Virtual primary and urgent care offers a similar experience as an urgent care visit. You’ll be seen by an experienced healthcare provider who is specially trained to offer virtual care for common, non-emergency injuries and illnesses.

Are my medical records available for a virtual primary and urgent care visit?

Yes. Duke providers have access to your records. 

Can I get a doctor’s note?

Yes. Ask your provider to write you a note before ending your video visit and it will be sent to your My Duke Health account.

Is my doctor's visit secure?

Virtual visits are HIPAA-compliant, allowing for a safe and confidential visit with a provider. A summary will be sent to your My Duke Health account.

Can I use the service when I’m traveling?

Because virtual primary and urgent care is staffed by Duke providers, you must be physically located in North Carolina to hold a visit. There is one exception: this service can be used if you are traveling in Virginia and have been seen at Duke Primary Care or Duke Urgent Care in the past. Duke Health Anywhere provides a virtual care option if you are out of state.

What are the technical requirements?

A virtual visit occurs through your My Duke Health account on a mobile device or computer with a webcam. Instructions and details on specifications are in this FAQ.

Duke Virtual Primary and Urgent Care Available

Schedule a video appointment with a Duke provider and receive care for a minor medical concern from the comfort of your home. A My Duke Health account is required. Insurance is accepted.

This page was medically reviewed on 06/30/2023