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FaceTime connects you and your patients  through audio or video calls from your iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch to other iOS devices, even a Macintosh computer equipped with a FaceTime camera.

If you and your patient have any of the above Apple devices, you can get started with FaceTime.

You can use FaceTime over Wi-Fi or over cellular network on supported iOS or iPadOS devices. You may use PHSA-provided iOS devices or your personal iOS devices.

When to use it

  • For one-on-one and one-to-group virtual health visits

Best use

    • Ad hoc consults
    • Follow ups
    • Check ins

Technical requirements

  • You and your patient need an email address associated with Apple ID or phone number
  • Access to Wi-Fi or cellular data connection
  • Any Apple devices such as iPhone, iPad, iPod touch or Macintosh computer
  • Turning off all ‘cloud’ functions

Privacy and Security 

  • Because the Privacy Impact Assessment is pending completion by PHSA Privacy Office, under emergency response due to COVID-19, PHSA is collaborating with the Ministry of Health to expedite privacy and security review of virtual health solutions on behalf of all B.C. health authorities

Risk and limitation

  • Unintended sharing of personal identifiable information
  • Lack of meeting invite password encryption
  • Apple devices required
  • Potential to send meeting invite to an uninvited recipient
  • Policy constraints if user was on external Wi-Fi or public setting
  • No analytics available via the solution 

Guideline and policy


Step 1

Introduce virtual health to patients
Introduce the FaceTime option to patients by phone/email/text. Check the technical readiness of your patient. Obtain the patient’s personal email and send an initial email to validate their email address and provide notification of risks (see APPENDIX 1: Client Notification Form (PDF), and APPENDIX 2: sample validation script (PDF)).

Step 2
Set up virtual health visit 
Ensure patient is comfortable with FaceTime. Contact patient to schedule a visit. Obtain the patient personal email or cell phone number. 

When scheduling a visit, patient’s email associated to Apple ID or cell phone number must be added as resources. 

Step 3
Conduct a virtual health visit 
Prior to the visit, choose a private location with reliable internet access. 

In the unlikely event of technical issues, please switch to a telephone visit with patient. Supporting materials can be sent to patient via email or SMS.

After the visit, email/text the patient experience survey link (optional). Document encounter in patient record as usual.

SOURCE: FaceTime ( )
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