Sofie Wise

Dr. Umer Khan

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About Author — Medically reviewed by Dr Umer Khan, MD who is a Board Certified physician practicing in Pennsylvania. His special interests include wellness, longevity and medical IT.

Most PlushCare articles are reviewed by M.D.s, Ph.Ds, N.P.s, nutritionists and other healthcare professionals. Click here to learn more and meet some of the professionals behind our blog.

Can an Online Doctor Write a Prescription?

You may be wondering, can a doctor prescribe medication without seeing a patient?

The answer is yes, an online doctor can write a prescription for any non controlled substance they find necessary and beneficial to your health. Instead of seeing you in person, the doctor will meet with you via phone or video chat.

Can You Get a Doctor’s Prescription Online?

It only takes 3 steps to get a virtual doctor prescription:

Speak with a doctor online from a mobile app or computer

Get diagnosed

Get prescribed medication for pickup at a local pharmacy


book online doctor appointment

How Much Does an Online Doctor Cost?

The cost of an online doctor visit will vary from platform to platform.

Before booking an appointment see if the telehealth platform accepts health insurance or if they have a flat rate fee. Also check if the online doctor is subscription based with ongoing payments, or if you will only need to make a one time payment.

Online doctor appointments with PlushCare are affordable for all patients.

We accept health insurance from all major providers. Patients with health insurance will pay their typical in office co payment.


The average insured patient pays just $25 dollars to see an online doctor.


For patients without health insurance we offer a flat rate fee of $99. This is much more affordable than urgent care centers and emergency rooms where bills can run well into the hundreds.

If the online doctor is unable to treat you over the phone or computer you will get your money back.

Common Online Doctor Prescriptions

online doctor writing prescription

In general, online doctors can write 90-day prescriptions for any medicine approved by the Drug Enforcement Administration. They can also prescribe prescription refills.

Popular prescriptions written by online doctors include:

The prescriptions above are just a fraction of the medications that can be prescribed online. Licensed online doctors electronically send prescriptions to pharmacies allowing for greater comfort and convenience.


Read: Get Prescription Refill Online


book online doctor appointment

Maintaining Online Prescription Safety

Keeping patients safe is a doctor’s responsibility. They should be able to fully explain the prescription process and give you reasons for choosing a certain medication over others.

To maintain prescription safety online doctors will,

  • Determine all your current medical conditions, including your drug history and current prescriptions as well as over-the-counter medications.
  • Identify what’s causing your current condition and perform a thorough examination of your health.
  • Make sure that your condition presents enough justification to actually prescribe medication.
  • Rule out the possibility of any contraindications, which refer to any situation where the medication may actually cause harm to the patient.

Read: How Do Online Doctor Visits Work?


Online Doctors cannot currently prescribe controlled substances, including:

  • Medicinal marijuana
  • Antipsychotic medications such as Zyprexa, Risperdol
  • Stimulants, including Adderall and Ritalin
  • Narcotics, like morphine, oxycodone, and Vicodin
  • Sedatives and sleep aids, including Xanax, Ambien, Ativan, and Lunesta

The Online Doctor Process

Video consultation with doctor.

While specifics differ from doctor to doctor, most online doctor visits follow the same basic process.

It starts with making an appointment, which can include registering or making an account. From there, your doctor contacts you for a one-on-one video chat or phone call.

During your visit, you can talk to your online doctor about what’s bothering you, ask any questions, and essentially treat the experience as you would any other doctor’s visit.

Instead of spending hours going to and from your appointment, online consultations typically take just 15 minutes or less. Often times an appointment will be available immediately.


97% of conditions are treated on the first visit


At the end of this consultation, your online doctor will diagnose your condition and provide you with a personalized treatment plan, which may include any necessary online prescription medications.

If you do require a prescription, your online doctor will send it electronically to a pharmacy of your choosing, where you can pick it up at your convenience.

If you’re interested in getting your prescription online, book an appointment with a PlushCare doctor today. We proudly operate in all 50 states, our doctors are waiting to see you!


Read More About Online Doctor Prescriptions


Article Sources

evisit.com. How to Get a Prescription Without Going to a Doctor. Accessed October 2, 2019, at https://blog.evisit.com/how-to-get-a-prescription-without-seeing-a-doctor

verywellhealth.com. Is it Legal to Buy Other Prescription Online? Accessed October 2, 2019, at https://www.verywellhealth.com/legal-to-buy-prescription-drugs-from-online-pharmacies-2614903

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