Amanda Leite’s daughter Nicole was running a fever while her family was shut in by Hurricane Irma.
The worst of the storm was tearing through the Orlando, Fla., area on Sept. 6, 2017, when Leite’s 4-year-old was sick. It sounded like a train was barreling through their boarded-up house in Lake Nona, said Leite. She took shelter with her two daughters in a closet in the center of her home that’s just big enough to fit a full-size mattress.
Leite wasn’t sure if she should give Nicole ibuprofen because she had a bleeding disorder. She was scrolling through Facebook and found an advertisement for Jacksonville-based Nemours Children’s Health System and its telehealth app. Nicole “hadn’t been sick for years,” said Leite, who had never used a telehealth service before. “It was scary. We couldn’t leave, and there was a lot of uncertainty as to when we could get to a doctor.”
Leite logged on and a doctor guided her via the camera on her phone, like a FaceTime call. She pressed on her belly, checked her throat and surveyed her stomach for a rash. Leite gave Nicole a small dose of ibuprofen and her fever subsided. “I will never forget that.”