Googling symptoms can now let you call doctor

14 Oct 2014

In what gives new meaning to ‘Google docs’, internet search giant Google is now trialling a service that lets users search for symptoms online and call a doctor through video chat.

The internet tends to jump the gun in terms of what a very normal, non-fatal condition is and could sometimes turn even the average person into a hypochondriac.

Now, however, if Google users search the term ‘pain in chest’, for example, Google will inform them they can speak to a Google-approved doctor over an online video feed if they wish to discuss their problem.

Google quietly launched the service in the last number of days, but an eagle-eyed Reddit user going under the name of jasonahoule spotted the new service after searching ‘knee pain’.

A screenshot of jasonahoule’s search. Image via jasonahoule

From the screenshot of what was presented to him online, Google is running a limited trial of the service before a full release and for those who can try it now, Google will cover the costs of the online appointment.

Google has since confirmed the service’s existence online but has remained tight-lipped regarding when it will be given a full release.

Online doctor image via Shutterstock

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic