Find answers to frequently asked questions about connecting virtually with a Duke urgent care provider.
- When should I use Duke Virtual Urgent Care?
- What illnesses are covered by Duke Virtual Urgent Care?
- Do I have to be a Duke patient to use Duke Virtual Urgent Care?
- What age patients can use the service?
- Can I use my insurance?
- Can I schedule an appointment in advance?
- Can I get a prescription for antibiotics?
- What medications may not be prescribed?
- Will the doctor send a prescription to my pharmacy?
- Can I see my own doctor?
- Are my medical records available for a virtual urgent care visit?
- Can I get a doctor’s note?
- Is my visit with the doctor secure?
- Can I use the service when I’m traveling?
- What are the technical requirements?
When should I use Duke Virtual Urgent Care?
Duke Virtual Urgent Care is ideal if you’re a current Duke patient and 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 Duke MyChart and you must be in North Carolina. Virtual visits are available from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm.
If you’re seeking online urgent care outside those 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 Are Covered by Duke Virtual Urgent Care?
Only minor conditions are appropriate for video visits. Duke Virtual Urgent Care is limited to the evaluation of:
- Cold and flu-like symptoms
- COVID-19 and respiratory symptoms
- Pink eye
- Runny nose, sinus congestion, or infection
- Rash or skin condition (high-resolution video required)
- Seasonal allergies
- Urinary symptoms (non-pregnant females 18 to 65)
- Vaginal yeast infection
Do I Have to Be a Duke Patient to Use Duke Virtual Urgent Care?
Yes. You must be an established patient at Duke and have a Duke MyChart account. If you’re already a patient, but don’t have an account, you can sign up now.
What Age Patients Can Use the Service?
Duke Virtual Urgent Care can be used by people ages 6 and up.
Can I Use My Insurance?
Yes. Duke Virtual Urgent Care is covered by insurance as an urgent care visit. You’ll be responsible for any copayments.
Can I Schedule an Appointment in Advance?
Appointments must be scheduled at least one hour ahead of time through your Duke MyChart account.
Can I Get a Prescription for Antibiotics?
Antibiotics are effective medications to treat bacterial infections, such as a urinary tract infection or vaginal yeast infection. However, most upper respiratory infections are actually 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 May Not be 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 could be prescribed include antibiotics, steroids, or cough medications.
Can I See My Own Doctor?
Duke Virtual Urgent Care offers a similar experience as an in-person urgent care visit, where patients don’t get to select their provider. You’ll be seen by an experienced urgent care doctor, physician assistant, or nurse practitioner with special training on how to offer care virtually. You can’t see a specialist through urgent care, which only covers a variety of common, non-emergency injuries and illnesses.
Are My Medical Records Available for a Virtual Urgent Care Visit?
Yes. Duke Virtual Urgent Care 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 Duke MyChart account.
Is My Visit with the Doctor Secure?
Virtual visits are HIPAA-compliant, allowing for a safe and confidential visit with a provider. A summary will be sent to your Duke MyChart account.
Can I Use the Service When I’m Traveling?
No. Because Duke Virtual Urgent Care is staffed with Duke providers, you must be physically located in North Carolina to hold a visit. If you’re out-of-state, Duke Health Anywhere provides a virtual care option.
What Are the Technical Requirements?
A virtual visit must be held through your Duke MyChart account on a mobile device or computer with a webcam. Instructions and details on specifications are in this FAQ.