Telemedicine is the next big movement in health care. The practice has already made strides to revolutionize the complicated and burgeoning health sector in America, though it still has a long way to go. Despite this, many people in America might be wondering just how it has helped the health care system, and even what exactly telemedicine is. Essentially, telemedicine is the practice of delivering health care, mostly in the form of clinical appointments, via telecommunications or digital communications. Originally, the term was solely used to describe the former; however, with the rise of digital technology, it now encompasses primarily the latter. Telemedicine is advantageous to many forms of treatment, but when you pair it with an equal progressive treatment measure like emotional support animals, you can really see how effective it is.

Emotional support animals (or ESAs for short) are a new wave of therapy for patients afflicted with the most common forms of mental disorders, such as depression, anxiety, PTSD, and bipolar disorder. They take the form of pets, and require no specific training or guidelines to aid their owner; instead, they help calm the symptoms of the above disorders with their continued presence in their owner’s life. Emotional support animals can be an already-owned pet who is given ESA status, or they can be a completely new animal. Any species counts as an ESA; it’s entirely down to what sort of pet makes the patient feel calm, secure, and reassured. Despite this, as with normal pets, emotional support animals are overwhelmingly dogs and cats.

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With emotional support animals becoming more popular, many people are utilizing telemedicine to avail of this alternative therapy.

ESAs are prescribed via the means of an important document called an emotional support animal letter (or ESA letter). This is given to the patient by a certified medical professional, and allows them (and by extension their ESA) to avail of a number of laws designed to help disabled people. Some people might be concerned about procuring this letter, but fortunately, telemedicine can actually play a crucial part in obtaining this important document. Through telemedicine sites like Moosh, patients suffering from a wide variety of mental disorders can be assessed online, and receive their ESA letter without ever having to visit a doctor in person.

This is beneficial in a number of ways. ESAs aren’t governed by the same laws as normal pets; due to their status as essentially a form of psychiatric treatment, they are allowed to accompany their owners to places other pets would usually not be allowed to venture. The two prime examples of this are airplane cabins, which are covered by the Air Carrier Access Act, and rented accommodation, which falls under the Fair Housing Act. Although these laws weren’t designed specifically with emotional support animals in mind, they cover a whole host of disorders and disabilities; their main function is to call a halt to any form of discrimination.

Unfortunately, many landlords and property owners don’t necessarily know the ins and outs of emotional support animals, as they are a relatively new phenomenon in the world of mental treatment. This is why the ESA letter is so important, and so necessary when either attempting to rent property with an ESA in tow, or bringing an ESA into a property you’re already renting. With this simple document, the landlord must accept you and your ESA, and if they try to discriminate against you, they can be punished by law. All the patient has to make sure of is that the letter is in date; typically an ESA letter is valid for one year. An out-of-date letter is null and void, and your landlord would then have legal grounds to refuse to rent to you.

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Getting an ESA letter using telemedicine has never been easier.

Fortunately, the process of obtaining an emotional support animal letter is simple, especially when you use telemedicine. If you’re anxious about the process of retrieving one in person, then availing of telemedicinal services is the best course of action; it can save you time, stress, and money. You can also renew your letter via the same means, making sure you’re up to date and covered by the various laws. It’s important to remember to do this, as if you let it slip, you and your ESA might be vulnerable. Fortunately, the process of renewing your letter is as easy as getting it in the first place. Utilizing telemedicine can make this particular area of progressive health care a breeze, leaving you to enjoy your new life with your emotional support animal.

Telemedicine is helping patients up and down the country save time, money, and effort with their health care. The implementation of ESAs is only one area where the new movement is proving hugely beneficial. As the months and years roll on, telemedicine will no doubt become a bigger and bigger part of our society as technology advances, and digital tools become integrated further into our day-to-day lives. The future is bright!