Reasons to Get a Doctor’s Certificate Online
Anyone who has ever been sick and has had to miss a few days of work or university knows how much of a hassle it can be to head down to your local GP to get a doctor certificate confirming your illness. You might be throwing up left, right and centre, or have a splitting headache making it difficult for you to keep your eyes open, but if your employer has asked you to submit a medical leave certificate before allowing you to stay home, you’d have to get out of bed, drive down to your local GP, wait up to an hour to be seen and drive back home, all for a piece of paper!
While most employers in Australia do not ask for a sick leave certificate for the odd day off, it is not illegal to do so. So if you ever find yourself in the position where you’re being asked to submit a doctor certificate for sick leave but don’t have it in you to make it to a GP, it can be helpful to have another option: online doctor certificates.
What are online medical certificates?
As the name suggests, online medical certificates are medical certificates that are issued by an online doctor. Just like a certificate issued by a doctor in person, this certificate contains all the necessary information such as:
- The name of the person the certificate is being issued to, such as an employer
- The name and address of the issuing practitioner,
- The name of the patient,
- The date the online doctor consulted with the patient,
- Whether the doctor considers is appropriate for the patient to take time off,
- When the patient is likely to return to work or study,
- The date the certificate was issued.
It does not have to include any details of your illness if you don’t want it to, as even in an online consultation, a doctor is required to respect the patient’s confidentiality at all times. Online doctor certificates are just as valid as an ordinary certificate.
The Benefits of Getting Your Doctor Certificate Online
As you may have guessed, getting a doctor certificate online is incredibly convenient. Not only are they quicker, they also help you save time and money and allow you more time to focus on getting better. Let’s take a look at what the average doctor’s appointment looks like:
- You wake up with a fever and cold and message your employer to let them know you’ll be taking a few days off. Unfortunately, your employer is already short staffed and wants to see a medical certificate before allowing you to take your sick leave.
- With your fever and cold, you get out of bed, get dressed and drive down to your closest GP. Not only does this prevent you from getting the rest you need to get better, it is also considered negligent driving because being unwell takes your attention away from the road, putting you at higher risk of getting in an accident.
- Once you safely reach the doctor’s clinic, you are asked to take a seat and wait until the doctor is ready to see you, which could take up to an hour depending upon how many patients there are before you.
- Now that you’ve finally made it to your doctor’s office, all it takes the doctor is one look at you and your condition to determine that you truly are too sick to go to work and they issue you the certificate right away.
- Now, you have to make the journey back home. All that, just for a five-minute appointment and a piece of paper!
On the other hand, when getting your certificate online, you can skip most of the above steps. Now, the process looks something like this:
- You wake up with a fever and cold and message your employer to let them know you’ll be taking a few days off. Unfortunately, your employer is already shortstaffed and wants to see a medical certificate before allowing you to take your sick leave.
- While still in bed, you log on to your telehealth app and select the medical certificate option.
- You fill in a brief questionnaire about your symptoms and select a consultation time of your choice.
- Now, while waiting for your consultation time to roll around, you take a nap, drink some hot soup and take a warm shower to relieve your congestion.
- Your online doctor gets in touch with you at the time you chose and after a brief video consultation, your certificate is emailed to you, ready for you to send to your employer.
The best part? Getting your doctor certificate online also ends up saving you money! The standard online appointment costs no more than $20, much less than you’d expect to pay at a tradiitonal clinic. Also add to that the cost of fuel. Many of these appointments can also be bulk billed, which means you pay nothing out of pocket!