If you want to make an appointment at a traditional dermatology clinic offline, it is usually coded as a “specialist appointment.” As such, visits to the dermatologist tend to be expensive.
The idea of being able to visit the dermatologist online instead, saving time, money and hassle, is therefore an appealing one. Such is the service that Apostrophe offers to customers through its website.
Does Apostrophe live up to its promise of easy, affordable, high-quality dermatological care? We decided to investigate this website in-depth to find out.
What is Apostrophe?
First of all, let’s start with the basics. What exactly is Apostrophe?
Apostrophe is part of a new trend in healthcare. Instead of making an appointment at a brick-and-mortar dermatologist’s office, you make an appointment with one of Apostrophe’s dermatologists online.
Through a visual examination, the dermatologist is able to make a diagnosis and come up with a treatment plan. You can then order your prescriptions at a reduced price online if you wish. Otherwise, you can have the prescription sent to your usual local pharmacist.
It is helpful to be aware that Apostrophe used to be known as “YoDerm,” and has since re-branded.
Apostrophe Quick Facts
- Initial appointment cost: $20.
- Board-certified dermatologists.
- Services available in more than 30 states.
- Diagnosis within 24 hours.
- Personalized prescriptions through the compounding pharmacist.
- Free shipping on prescriptions.
- Payment options include credit or debit card and PayPal.
What Are the Benefits of an Online Appointment With Apostrophe?
Here are a few reasons to consider making an online appointment with Apostrophe:
- Save time. It takes time to drive to and from a traditional physical dermatologist’s office. Once you arrive, you also may find yourself waiting for a long time. An online “visit” eliminates the drive and the wait time completely.
- Save money. In some cases, an appointment with Apostrophe online might cost less than one offline with your insurance.
- Access care in rural areas. Is your “local” dermatologist located two hours away and booked up for the next two months? Get access to the care you need without waiting for weeks or months or traveling long distances.
What Services Does Apostrophe Provide?
Apostrophe provides the following services:
- Treatment for acne to help clear up your complexion
- Wrinkle reduction
- Rosacea treatment
- Hair loss treatment
- Treatment for thin eyebrows
So, it should be noted that not every dermatology service is available through Apostrophe. There are some things that you might need to still get checked out via a different clinic. Not everything can be diagnosed with a simple visual inspection.
But if you do need treatment services in any of these areas, Apostrophe may be able to save you time, hassle and money.
What Does Apostrophe Cost?
For most services, Apostrophe charges only $20 for your first visit. If you end up getting a prescription, the company will subtract the appointment cost from the prescription cost to save you money.
Apostrophe is transparent about these charges, and also states on their website what price range you can expect for a prescription for a given condition.
For example, if you are seeking treatment for rosacea, you can expect the prescription cost to range between $40 and $90 if you go through the online pharmacy Apostrophe provides.
What Are the Apostrophe Payment Options?
There are two ways to pay for Apostrophe services. You can either use a credit or debit card or you can pay with PayPal.
Take note that Apostrophe is a cash pay service. Insurance is not accepted.
How Does Apostrophe Work?
If you are brand new to online health services like Apostrophe, you may wonder if it is complicated to get started with health appointments online.
It is actually a very simple, straightforward process. Here are the steps:
1. Open an account.
2. Set up your “visit.”
3. Submit your information to your doctor.
4. Receive your diagnosis.
5. Order and receive your prescription.
Let’s go over them in detail.
1. Open an account
The first thing you’ll need to do before you can schedule an appointment is open an account. On the Apostrophe homepage, click on the gray button in the upper right that says “Begin visit.”
This will take you to a screen where you can enter in an email address and password to open an account. Make sure you use an account that you will be checking regularly so that you do not miss an important communication from your doctor.
2. Set up your “visit.”
It’s pretty much assumed that if you are scheduling a visit, you are expecting to be prescribed a medication. So, once you are registered, you are taken automatically to a page that says, “I want prescription medication for:”
Under that, you can select one or more skin conditions, or you can select “eyelashes” or “male pattern baldness.”
What is great is that you are provided with an upfront cost estimate for prescriptions for the category that you select, and you are reminded that the fee for the appointment is $20.
On the next page, you can provide your personal information including your first and last name, date of birth, state and phone number.
Once you fill in your state, on that same page, you will see what doctors are available in your state.
Apostrophe is not available yet in every state. If the state you are located in falls into that category, the site will inform you at this point.
Select the doctor you prefer and scroll down. Check the box and click “Give consent” to complete this screen.
The next screen provides you with further information on possible prescription options.
This is also the payment screen where you can select your payment method (PayPal or credit or debit card) and submit your payment for your appointment (the $20 flat fee already discussed, as at the time of this writing).
3. Submit your information to your doctor
After you pay, it is time to receive your online dermatology services.
You will receive a set of questions which you will need to answer, providing as much information as you can on your condition.
You also will need to submit photographs which document your condition. That way the doctor can perform a visual inspection.
4. Receive your diagnosis
Your doctor will now have a chance to review the information and photos you provided.
Based on your photos and your answers to the medical questions, your dermatologist will make a diagnosis and create a plan for you to treat your condition. If a prescription is required, the doctor will write one up for you. You should hear back from the doctor within 24 hours of submitting your answers and photos.
5. Order and receive your prescription
You can then order your prescription directly through the Apostrophe pharmacy online without ever leaving the comfort of your home.
The cost of your appointment is subtracted from the cost for your prescription.
Your prescription will then ship for free and arrive at your door, ready to use.
Is Apostrophe Legit?
While Apostrophe’s simple, fast alternative to traditional in-person dermatology appointments is appealing, you may have concerns about whether the site is trustworthy.
Apostrophe is a legitimate company offering services from board-certified doctors.
In fact, every doctor who works for Apostrophe has been certified by the American Board of Dermatology.
This is why you choose your dermatologist based on the state where you are located. You have to pick a doctor who is licensed to diagnose and write prescriptions in your state.
On the website, you can find information about every one of the dermatologists at Apostrophe.
The Apostrophe pharmacy is a compounding pharmacy, which means that the medications you can order through the site are customized to your exact needs.
Apostrophe specializes in prescribing medications, not supplements. The company states that all of the ingredients contained in its medications:
- Are cruelty-free
- Contain no added fragrances or colors
- Will not clog your pores
So, both the doctors and the pharmacy at Apostrophe are legitimate and offer the same caliber of quality that you would expect if you went to a traditional offline dermatologists.
Pros of Apostrophe
- Apostrophe is a legit company which can connect you with a board-certified dermatologist for a diagnosis and prescription. The company’s compounding pharmacy can customize your medication to your needs.
- The $20 fee for your initial “visit” is reasonable and affordable, especially compared to typical specialist fees for dermatology visits offline. The fact that this fee is subtracted from your prescription costs and shipping on your prescription is free saves you even more money.
- Along with saving you money, Apostrophe saves you time and hassle. You do not even need to leave your house once during the process. Paying for your “visit” and submitting your information is very much on your schedule, making it a convenient alternative to the traditional process.
- With its flat, affordable fee structure and its simple and fast process, Apostrophe makes dermatology accessible to everyone in the states that it serves.
- Every patient is assigned an Apostrophe Care Team. On your team are your dermatologist as well as your Care Coordinators. Anytime you have a question, you can contact your team for personalized assistance through your account.
- For some people, an in-person visit to the clinic can provoke anxiety or embarrassment. This is particularly common with issues such as male pattern baldness or acne. Using Apostrophe greatly reduces or even eliminates these undesirable emotions.
Cons of Apostrophe
- There is help for male-pattern baldness, but not for thinning or bald patches for women.
- Apostrophe provides dermatology services within a few narrow niches, but does not offer all services (nevertheless, this is expected, as some services would require a physical examination).
- Apostrophe is not available in every state.
- You cannot use your insurance (for some people, this might be a negative, while for many others, it will be irrelevant).
Who Should Consider Apostrophe Online Dermatology Services?
Anybody age 13 or up can use Apostrophe (if you are under 18, you will need permission from your parent or guardian).
Apostrophe May Be Right For You If ….
- You either do not have insurance or have a difficult time affording an end-in-person visit to the dermatologist even with your insurance.
- You need help with a basic dermatological concern which can be diagnosed without a physical, in-person examination and which falls within the umbrella of services offered by Apostrophe.
- You find it inconvenient to attend an appointment in person. For example, you might not be able to take time off work for an appointment, or you might live in a rural region or access to care is limited.
- You would prefer to avoid a clinical environment for reasons relating to anxiety or embarrassment.
- You simply want to make it easier and faster all around to see to your dermatological needs.
Apostrophe May Not Be Right For You If ….
- You are located in a state where Apostrophe does not yet provide services.
- Your insurance would provide you with lower-cost services (this is unlikely under most plans as a dermatologist is a specialist).
- You need help with an issue which Apostrophe does not specialize in.
Apostrophe Offers Fast, Affordable, Easy Online Visits With Board-Certified Dermatologists
Hopefully after reading this Apostrophe review, you now have answers to most of your questions about this online dermatology clinic.
Even though Apostrophe cannot diagnose all conditions, for many basic dermatological needs, the service can provide rapid, easy access to quality care and prescriptions.
If you are in one of the many states that Apostrophe serves, you are just $20 and 24 hours away from the diagnosis and prescription you need to clear up your skin, reduce wrinkles, treat rosacea, or treat thinning hair or eyebrows.