As most doctors would say, it's just the beginning of flu season, which means that it's time to go get your flu shot. While most drugstores do offer free flu shots with most insurances, going to the drugstore isn't a one stop fix to all of your health issues; even those that you're unaware of. This would require finding a doctor, which is honestly scary and a very adult thing to do, but finding the right doctor isn't all that easy; but now it is, thanks to Zocdoc.

What's Zocdoc?

TL;DR: Zocdoc is an online website and a mobile app that allows you to find the right doctor for all of your medical needs and allows you to book appointments right through the app or the website, depending on which you're using. Zocdoc has an array of doctors, ranging from OB-GYNs, primary care doctors, nurse practitioners, allergists, dentists, nutritionists, and therapists, just to name a few. I'd honestly be lying if I said that I haven't booked appointments with one or more of the doctors above, cause tapping a simple button to make an appointment with a friendly, well-reviewed doctor is way less intimidating than calling the office in hopes of getting an appointment.

A nice feature that Zocdoc has to offer is reviews of each and every person that lists their practice on the site. This way, you know what you're getting yourself into before stepping into the door, which should help to alleviate any anxiety that you might have. Through Zocdoc, I've found an amazing internist, nurse practitioner, nutritionist, optometrist, and OB-GYN the I see on a regular basis. Another nice feature that Zocdoc has is that they allow you to scan your insurance card right into the app, so whenever you make a search for whichever doctor you need, you'll be matched with doctors that accept your insurance. 

How does Zocdoc work?

First, you'll need to sign up; obviously. Signing up is easy, and only takes a mere two seconds to complete. You can signup for Zocdoc either by connecting it to your Google account (aka email) or by connection it to your Facebook; additionally, you can sign up manually with your email address. When prompted, enter your basic information, and make sure to scan your insurance card so that you can find in-network doctors stat. Once you've done such, you can start searching for doctors near you, read their reviews, and make an appointment if you like what you see; simple, right? After making an appointment, you can fill out check-in forms right from the app, as well as get directions to where you're going, so you won't get lost, which is always important. You can also add your appointments to your phone calendar directly from the app, thus making it easy to remember when your appointments are; cause being forgetful is a real struggle at times. 

Tips and tricks

Having used Zocdoc since April of this year, I have a few things to say about the service. If you're like me and are one to see only women doctors, you can filter out your search to only show women doctors. You're also able to reschedule or cancel your appointment(s) directly from the app, thus saving you an awkward phone call to the office. Those that list their practice on Zocdoc tend to have photos of themselves and or of the office on their personal page, so make sure to look at them; after all, you should be able to put a face to a name. What I like to do is choose those with stellar reviews that also look friendly so I won't feel so anxious when meeting them for the first time; and if you decide that you don't want to see whomever you're seeing again, you simply don't have to.

When booking an appointment, be cautious when the site/app says that you might be seeing someone under the supervision of the doctor that you're trying to make an appointment with, since chances are, you won't actually get to see the doctor themselves, but someone else that might be a complete rando; not to disappoint you, but you can't say that I didn't give you a fair warning. 

In short, Zocdoc's here to make your life easier by allowing you to book all of your necessary health related appointments all from the same place; for free, and with the tap of a button... or a few, but you're still tapping buttons, which is more my speed than making phone calls to strangers.