Best Online Doctors

Find the top telehealth services for your needs

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Online doctors and telemedicine apps allow you to receive health care virtually, without the need to visit a physician’s office in person.

This is something that's becoming more prevalent as we rely more on the internet and our smartphones in our daily lives. You can now make digital appointments for primary care, dermatology, mental health services, women's health care, men's health care, and more. From MDLive to Anytime Pediatrics, you can find the best online doctors for your or your child(ren)'s needs.

The 6 Best Online Doctors of 2022

Best Overall : MDLive

MD Live

MD Live

Key Specs

  • Pricing: $0-$82 for medical consult, depending on insurance
  • Accepts Insurance: Yes
  • Platform: Web and app

Why We Chose It: MDLive doctors can address more than 80 non-emergency medical conditions for your family and offer virtual visits for certain concerns.

  • Available 24/7 via a browser or smartphone app

  • Upfront pricing

  • Services may be covered by insurance

  • In addition to primary care, offers dermatology, therapy, and psychiatric services

  • You can browse doctor profiles and schedule an appointment online

  • Live chat available for the hearing impaired

  • Payment collected prior to your appointment

  • Wait times can be long for immediate urgent care services (although a callback service is offered)

MDLive is a telemedicine service that offers health care 24/7, through video-conferencing via a browser or smartphone app. The doctors of MDLive can treat more than 80 non-emergency medical conditions, such as the common cold, flu, and pink eye (conjunctivitis). The service also offers virtual visits for dermatology, counseling, and psychiatry.

First, you have to register for an account, which will ask for information such as your birthdate and your current insurance (if you have any). After registering, you can submit a request for the type of care you want and be connected to an available doctor by video-conferencing. 

MDLive can provide non-emergency care for the entire family, including children. But these services are not intended to replace your primary care provider, and you do not get to choose the doctor providing care to you over the virtual visit.

The company accepts a range of insurance plans, or you can opt to pay a per-visit fee. According to the service’s website, pricing for medical care varies based on your insurance coverage, if any. Specialty visits cost more, with a virtual psychiatry visit to evaluate and treat issues like addiction or panic disorders being most expensive.

Best for Women’s Health : Maven



Key Specs

  • Pricing: Starts at about $20 a visit
  • Accepts Insurance: No
  • Platform: Web and app

Why We Chose It: Maven takes a holistic approach to women and family health, offering access to experts that range from physicians and nutritionists for fertility counseling, perinatal care, and more.

  • Available 24/7 via a browser or smartphone app

  • Offers comprehensive telehealth services for women and their families, including fertility counseling, perinatal care, midwife services, mental health counseling, and pediatric primary care

  • Upfront pricing, starting as low as $20 per visit

  • Offered as a member benefit by some health insurers

  • Although some insurers offer the service to their members, the company does not accept insurance

  • Pricing varies by the duration of the appointment, with longer appointments incurring additional fees

  • Mental health provider appointments can be more expensive, starting at $70 for 40 minutes

  • Should not be considered a substitute for in-person perinatal care or midwifery services

Maven offers women’s health, family planning, and pediatric care through video chats and messaging. Many health insurers and employers offer Maven as an employee benefit, but you also can access these telemedicine services as an individual.

The company takes a holistic approach to women and family health, offering you access to experts that range from physicians and nutritionists to back-to-work specialists who can help new mothers transition back to their jobs. The app also hosts a robust peer community, where you can converse with other members.

For individuals, Maven operates on a pay-per-visit system and discloses fees upon booking. Once you sign up for this service, Maven’s doctors can transmit to your local pharmacy prescriptions for birth control, urinary tract infections, and other conditions.

Maven’s telemedicine service is not for women only. The app serves same-sex parents and offers adoption services in addition to family medical care.

Best for Men’s Health : Roman



Key Specs

  • Pricing: $15 for an online consult
  • Accepts insurance: No
  • Platform: Web

Why We Chose It: Roman offers digital health care services for men to address certain conditions and needs such as erectile dysfunction, men’s hair loss and more.

  • A confidential way for men to address certain sexual health concerns

  • Offers a free telehealth consultation with a certified physician

  • Doctors can prescribe medications for erectile dysfunction, premature ejaculation, genital herpes, and other conditions

  • Prescription prices are reasonable with free two-day shipping

  • Unlimited follow-up consultations are offered if you've received medication

  • You cannot choose your doctor

  • Does not accept insurance

  • The telehealth service is offered as a means to conveniently dispense a limited range of medications

  • Treatment options for premature ejaculation and testosterone deficiency are limited to one product each (and are of uncertain benefit)

  • Should not be considered a substitute for in-person medical care with a urologist

The Roman app made its mark by offering sexual health treatments to men, but it also offers healthcare services to diagnose and treat an array of common men’s medical conditions, such as heart and prostate health. Roman’s service is primarily messaging-based, though they offer video visits to men who reside in the states that require phone or video chats before a doctor can prescribe medication.

To use Roman, you’ll need to sign up for an account that includes filling out a questionnaire tailored to the medical issue you’re seeking care for. The sexual health questionnaire, for example, contains different questions than the questionnaire related to heart health.

After submitting the questionnaire, you’ll receive a message back from a doctor within 24 hours. This message will solicit additional information or offer a treatment plan that may include prescriptions. Roman operates its own pharmacy network and ships its own branded medications to your door.

Roman publishes all of its fees on its website, so you’ll have an idea of how much treatment is going to cost. And, once you’ve registered with them, you receive unlimited, free follow-up messaging with a Roman doctor.

Best Pediatric : Anytime Pediatrics

Anytime Pediatrics

Anytime Pediatrics

Key Specs

  • Pricing: Flat fee (not disclosed)
  • Accepts Insurance: Yes
  • Platform: Web and app

Why We Chose It: Anytime Pediatrics eliminates stress by allowing you to consult with a pediatrician via telemedicine when your child is ill or injured and the office is closed.

  • Accessible 24/7 from a browser or smartphone app

  • Dedicated solely to pediatrics

  • Provides on-demand and scheduled telehealth visits

  • Routine follow-ups are available for children with chronic illnesses or mental health conditions

  • May be covered by insurance plans that include telehealth services

  • For those without insurance or qualifying insurance, telehealth services are charged at a flat fee "far less than what you’ll pay at most retail clinics, urgent cares and emergency rooms."

  • You are only charged if you complete the visit

  • Better suited for minor medical concerns (such as colds, flu, rash, or abrasion) rather than for urgent care

  • Insurance claims need to submitted through your regular pediatrician

  • Payment is initiated once the consultation begins

  • Although routine follow-up services are offered, they should not be considered a substitute for your child's regular pediatrician

Anytime Pediatrics offers video visits with your own pediatrician (if they are a member of the Anytime Pediatrics service) or with another local pediatrician. This telemedicine app accepts many insurance plans and also offers a private pay option.

Taking small children to an urgent care center or emergency room can be stressful, and Anytime Pediatrics eliminates that stress by providing video visits in the comfort of your own home. During the video visit, an Anytime Pediatrics doctor can prescribe medications, and transmit them to your usual pharmacy. The doctor also can provide you with a school note, if needed.

Anytime Pediatrics provides a virtual medicine platform to thousands of pediatricians, which means you may be able to access your regular doctor through the service.

But if not, the app will connect you with a different, board-certified pediatrician in your local community. This doctor can provide non-emergency care for your children and will send medical notes to your regular pediatrician.

To use this pediatric telemedicine service, you first create an account, and then set up a profile for the child who needs care. For conditions like rashes or injuries, you can upload photos for the pediatrician to review.

Best Counseling : BetterHelp

Better Help

Better Help

Key Specs

  • Pricing: Flat fee (not disclosed)
  • Accepts Insurance: No
  • Platform: Web, app, phone

Why We Chose It: BetterHelp offers a convenient and discreet way to obtain the mental health support you need when you need it.

  • Allows you to search and select mental health professionals based on their credentials, specialities, and user reviews

  • Counseling can be conducted via video conferencing, live chat, messaging, or phone

  • The service is membership-based and costs $60 to $90 per week depending on your provider and/or the form of communication used

  • You can remain anonymous if you choose

  • Services are generally not covered by Medicaid, Medicare, and most forms of insurance

  • It can sometimes take days before a provider confirms the initial appointment

  • Once you are paired with a counselor, their services are not unlimited and the availability of the counselor can vary

  • Costs can add up as the billing is made every four weeks by credit card or Paypal and will continue until you cancel your membership even if you don't use the service

BetterHelp offers four ways to access mental health services: messaging, chat, phone, or video. And, you can mix-and-match these methods in whatever way you want.

BetterHelp provides counseling services for teens, adults, and couples. To get started, you must sign up for a membership plan that is billed monthly. After subscribing, the telecounseling service matches you with a therapist, whom you can message as frequently as you’d like. If you want live therapy via video chat, you can schedule an appointment.

Telecounseling can be a discreet way to obtain the mental health support you need, when you need it. BetterHelp does not require you to enter your full name when registering, so you can remain completely anonymous. The telecounseling service also says it does not “cooperate” with insurance companies, so nothing related to your therapy can ever become part of your medical record.

The therapists in the BetterHelp network include psychologists, licensed clinical social workers, marriage and family therapists, and professional counselors. The service does not address prescribing on its website. If you want or need medication for a behavioral health concern, be sure to ask in advance if your therapist can prescribe.

Best Annual Subscription Plan : HealthTap



Key Specs

  • Pricing: Membership is about $15 a month
  • Accepts Insurance: Yes
  • Platform: Web, app, text messaging

Why We Chose It: The annual subscription offered by HealthTap includes unlimited virtual visits via video or text messaging for primary care, pediatric, counseling, and psychiatric services.

  • Available 24/7 through a browser and smartphone app

  • In addition to primary care, pediatric, counseling, and psychiatric services are also offered

  • On-demand telehealth services are available by membership at $15 per month

  • You can search providers by specialty and user scores and schedule appointments online

  • For non-members, there is a free service to assist with medical decisions and answer general questions about a specific health concern

  • Services are covered by only a small handful of health insurers

  • The monthly fee will continue to be billed to your credit card or Paypal account even if you don't use the service

  • The free services are either automated (such as their symptom checker) or take 24 hours before a medical question is answered (making it unsuitable for urgent situations)

HealthTap is a virtual healthcare provider that provides non-emergency medical care through its website and app. The service offers both a free membership and an annual subscription plan that includes unlimited virtual visits via video or text messaging.

With a free account, you can input symptoms to an artificial intelligence interface that can help you decide if you should see a doctor or not. A free account also includes access to a large database of physician-answered questions on various health topics.

To obtain medical care from a HealthTap provider, you must sign up for an annual subscription. Then, you can begin sending messages to the network’s doctors or request a video visit. HealthTap’s providers can order lab tests and transmit prescriptions to any pharmacy you choose.

The service says many companies subsidize HealthTap for employees, and the service will approach your employer to discuss adding this telemedicine app as a benefit. But you always have the option of signing up for a monthly individual subscription, if you choose.

Final Verdict

It can be difficult to schedule appointments with your doctor or healthcare provider, even when you especially need to consult about certain issues and concerns. Of course, online doctor consultations do not replace seeking help or treatment for emergency medical issues. But for non-emergency needs, online doctors and telehealth can be very helpful, especially when you don’t have health insurance, can’t travel or need middle-of-the night consultations with a pediatrician. 

Compare Online Doctors

Online Doctors Pricing Accepts insurance Platform
Best Overall
$0-$82 for medical consult, depending on insurance Yes Web and app
Best for Women’s Health
Starts at $20 a visit No Web and app
Best for Men’s Health
$15 for an online consult No Web
Anytime Pediatrics
Best Pediatric
Flat fee (not disclosed) Yes Web and app
Best Counseling
Flat fee (not disclosed) No Web, app, and phone
Best Annual Subscription Plan
Membership is $15 a month Yes Web, app, and text messaging


What is Telemedicine?

Telemedicine (also called “telehealth”) refers to medical care delivered from a distance by means of technology. Telemedicine includes virtual doctor visits conducted by videoconferencing, telephone conversations, and electronic messaging. Telemedicine offers a convenient (and often affordable) way to receive medical care, without the need for an in-person doctor visit.

Telehealth is legal in every U.S. state and is reimbursable to some extent by both Medicare and Medicaid, as well as many private insurers. While telemedicine originally was developed as a way to provide medical care to people living in rural and remote locations, telehealth has seen a surge in usage over the past year or so as urban and suburban patients alike seek health care that doesn’t require them to present at a medical facility in person when avoidable.

Do Online Doctors Accept Insurance?

Virtually every health insurer or provider offers telemedicine, so if you have insurance the first thing you should do is check with either your provider’s office or their insurance company to find out how to access telehealth visits.

An insurance plan requires you to access telehealth through the provider website. Providers or insurers usually contract with companies like Teladoc for the technology to provide telehealth, but they (the plan’s doctors) provide the actual telemedicine visit. You'll need to contact your insurance company to make sure your insurance is accepted.

How Much Do Online Doctors Cost?

Accessing medical care through an app can be very convenient, but costs can vary widely. Your health insurance may cover the cost of telemedicine visits under certain circumstances, but you also can choose to pay cash for a video visit with a doctor, therapist, or another type of provider.

The average cost of an urgent care visit varies with location but can run well over $160 dollars, while a telemedicine visit may cost less than half that amount. For fast, affordable medical care, an online doctor or telemedicine app can be an excellent choice. 

Some insurance companies don’t charge any co-pay for telemedicine visits with doctors in your network. Check with your provider or insurance company to find out if you can access telehealth tools for free.

When paying cash, your cost per visit can cost around $25 if you're using Rethink My Healthcare, to $284 for your first psychiatrist visit through MDLive and $108 for each follow-up. Each online doctor or app sets its own rate for cash appointments, so it pays to shop around.

Can Online Doctors Prescribe Medication?

Online doctors generally can prescribe antibiotics, skin creams, antidepressants, and other medically necessary prescriptions. However, most online doctors cannot prescribe medications like narcotics and certain psychiatric medications.

The federal government has instituted a registry to allow telemedicine doctors to prescribe these types of scheduled substances, but most doctors have not yet registered.

What If I Need a Lab Test?

Your telemedicine provider can electronically transmit orders for laboratory tests, imaging, and other studies the doctor may need to diagnose or treat your medical condition.

Be aware that you may be billed for these services if you do not use the telehealth service covered by your insurance company. Before consenting to tests, be sure to check with your insurer for guidance on whether or not the cost will be covered.

How We Chose the Best Online Doctors

We conducted extensive research to evaluate the breadth of services, convenience, accessibility, and costs of various telemedicine and telehealth providers. Our research included only nationally-available telemedicine providers, excluding local or regional services and apps. To determine overall value, we evaluated the cost of each app in relation to the scope of services provided.

Other factors we investigated prior to choosing the top apps included: credentials of the medical providers or therapists providing services, ease of use, health insurance acceptance, number and type of free services or resources included in the price, privacy, and security policies, including HIPAA compliance where applicable.

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5 Sources
Verywell Health uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
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