Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Health Care Reform:

Health Insurance & Affordable Care Act

Get the best medical attention when your doctor is off duty

Cross Coverage

Outpatient Care

Let's switch to the outpatient setting. It's Friday evening and you develop a burning feeling in your chest. You call your physician and are told he is "off call" for the weekend. Planning ahead will help you and the covering doctor make sure good care continues.

  • Remember that unless your physician is one of the relatively few doctors using an electronic medical record accessible over the Internet, the covering physician most likely will have no access to your office medical chart.
  • Keep a home medical history file -- a list of your medical problems, medications (including dosages and how often you take them each day), allergiesallergies, and past operations. Knowing your medications is especially important; the covering doctor will have no idea what "the little red pill" is.
  • If possible, have your home medical file available in a format that can be faxed or emailed to the covering doctor. If you're technically challenged, ask a family member or close friend to send the information to a covering doctor or emergency room.
  • Keep a list of a local pharmacy numbers, including at least one 24-hour pharmacy.
  • Keep track of your prescriptions so that you do not run out over a weekend.
  • Try to be concise but detailed when reporting your symptoms. The doctor will want to know:

    • What exactly is the symptom?
    • When did it start?
    • Did it start after you did something? (such as eating, exercise, and so on). Remembering the pepperoni pizza you ate 20 minutes before the chest burning began just may save you a trip to the emergency room!
    • Does anything make it better or worse?
    • Have you ever had it before?

  • Don't be afraid or intimidated to phone the cross-covering doctor. And if you don't get a return call within a reasonable time, call back. He or she may not have gotten the message.

Remember that weekend coverage is for urgent problems. But do not hesitate to call if you are not sure whether a problem is truly urgent. However, do not ask for a second opinion about a chronic, nonurgent issue that your regular doctor is already addressing.

Latest Health Reform News

Loading …
URAC: Accredited Health Web Site TRUSTe online privacy certification HONcode Seal AdChoices