FirstHealth helps Berry Patch overcome bee stings

Emily Sloan FirstHealth

			
				                                Amy Berry

Amy Berry

ELLERBE — Amy Berry considers herself lucky because she hasn’t visited doctors too often in her life.

Her luck was a little lacking recently when she and her husband had an encounter with honeybees on their produce stand in Ellerbe.

Berry was stung multiple times, and within a day she was dealing with significant swelling and discharge from her stings.

“I was hesitant to go to the emergency room or an urgent care facility, so I posted a picture on Facebook to see if any of my medical friends could give me advice,” Berry said. “Turns out that one of my friends works for FirstHealth, and she suggested that I download FirstHealth On the Go.”

Berry had never even heard of the app-based service that allows patients to connect with providers virtually, but within five minutes she had downloaded the app, registered and was waiting to hear back from a provider.

On the Go providers can treat many common medical conditions, including cold and flu symptoms, allergies, pink eye, respiratory infection, sinus problems, skin problems and other non-emergency medical conditions.

Berry said she didn’t have to wait long to get a call back from her On the Go provider.

“I did all of that while I was at work, and it was quick and simple. I got a call back within a few minutes, spoke to the doctor and he called in a prescription,” she said. “I was amazed at how quickly it was over and done with. My swelling was down significantly by the next day and I was getting back to normal.”

Daniel Barnes, D.O., president of FirstHealth Physician Group, said Berry’s story is a prime example of how On the Go can fill gaps in coverage for people who need to see a provider but may not be able to get to a clinic.

“Medical needs don’t always pop up during the business day, and Amy’s story is a prime example of how virtual visits ensure that patients can get the care they need when they need it from the comfort of their home,” he said. “The idea of a virtual visit might sound intimidating at

first but think of it this way – if you FaceTime with friends or family, you can use FirstHealth On the Go.”

Berry agreed, joking that the whole process was simple enough that her “mom could do it.”

“It was my first time doing a video visit, and it is something I would definitely recommend to family and friends,” she said.

Emily Sloan is director of public relations for FirstHealth of the Carolinas.