Connection Test & Troubleshooting Tips
All Mend users are encouraged to take our Connection Test before connecting for a video visit.
Patients receive a a connection test link via email and SMS text message every time a video visit is scheduled. We recommend that patients test their connection on the device they will use for the appointment at least 15 minutes before every appointment, even if they have used the same device to connect before.
Note to Patients: Receiving too many reminders to test your video connection? Log in to https://portal.mendfamily.com and click "Settings" in the main menu on the right side of the screen, and toggle the "Send Connection Test Reminders" option to the "Off" position.
Providers and staff are encouraged to test their connection before their first video visit, and any time they change devices, locations, or mode of internet connection. We recommend saving this link to the Connection Test for when it is needed.
The remainder of this article addresses how to troubleshoot common issues in the Connection Test. If you have failed a part of the Connection Test and the tips below do not help or do not apply, please check out the detailed Mend Troubleshooter or click the "Need Help?" button in Mend to start a live chat with our support team. We will do our best to help resolve your issue in time for your visit.
Older Mobile Devices
Like Mend Video Visits, the Mend Connection Test is compatible with most, but not all mobile devices. To determine whether your device is compatible, please review the Device Compatibility article.
Once you have the Mend Telemedicine app downloaded there are two ways to make sure you are ready for your appointment.
Option 1: Try a test run! Open the Mend Telemedicine App and enter the six digit code you have received for your appointment, then press "Join Visit." If you can see yourself in the bottom left corner, you should be good to go.
Option 2: Check your app permissions.
- Android: Tap "Settings," then "Apps and Notifications," then scroll until you see the Mend Telemedicine App. Tap to view the Mend Telemedicine app permissions.
- iPhone/iPad: Tap "Settings" and scroll until you see the Mend Telemedicine App. Tap the app to view the Mend Telemedicine app permissions.
From here, verify that "Camera" and "Microphone" are allowed.
Additional mobile app connection tips:
- Close all extra apps you are not using before your video visit
- This includes phone calls! If you are on a voice or FaceTime call, you won't be able to connect to a video visit
- Use a strong WiFi connection whenever possible
- If you are using cellular data, it may help to position yourself near a window to get a stronger signal
- Make sure your device is charged or plugged in
General Tip - Refresh!
Mend and our Connection Test are hosted on the internet, which means a lot of our troubleshooting tips can be applied to any sort of technical issue you encounter on a webpage. The first step we recommend is always going to be a "refresh."
Refresh (sometimes called reload) your web browser by clicking the circular arrow next to the address bar. Additional ways to refresh your web browser include:
- On a Windows computer, press the "F5" key on your keyboard.
- On a Mac computer, press and briefly hold the "⌘ Cmd" and "R" keys on your keyboard.
- On most mobile web browsers, touch near the top of the screen and "pull down."
Sometimes you may need to perform a "hard refresh," which goes a step further and reloads cached information you may not be able to see on the front end. To do this on a Windows computer, press and briefly hold the Ctrl and F5 keys. On a Mac, press and briefly hold ⌘ Cmd, ⇧ Shift, and R.
A web browser is the software application you use to connect to the internet.
If you are using a laptop, desktop computer, or an Android mobile device, we recommend using Google Chrome as your web browser for video visits. If you do not already have Google Chrome installed on your device, you may download it here. You may also use Firefox, Microsoft Edge, or Safari (recommended for iPhone and iPad).
Note: Internet Explorer is no longer a supported browser for Mend Video Visits.
If you are using one of the browsers listed above but still failed the first section of the test, you may be using an out of date version of your browser. This outside resource has compiled instructions for updating different web browsers.
First thing to check: Does your device have a camera? If no, you will not be able to use this device to connect for a video visit. Please use another device. If you are a patient and do not have access to a device with a camera, please contact your healthcare provider directly for further instructions.
If you do have a camera, is it covered or blocked in any way? Try adjusting the camera and restarting the test.
Second thing to check: If you are seeing a spinning wheel in the top right corner and a black rectangle, did you press the "Start Camera Test" button?
Depending on the size and resolution of your screen, you may need to scroll down to find and click the "Start Camera Test" button.
Third thing to check: Can you see yourself in the video feed? If you click "No," the Connection Test page will display instructions to make sure your camera is enabled.
- Were you prompted to "Allow" or "Block" your camera when you first started the test?
- Try refreshing your browser- does the prompt come up again? Click "Allow."
- No prompt? At the top of the screen, where you see the web address in the address bar, click on the "lock" icon to open the security details window. Make sure "Camera" is set to "Allow."
*Note: If you are using Safari on a Mac computer, iPhone or iPad and you are NOT prompted to allow your camera, please go to "Settings" in your device, search for "Safari," and manually set the camera setting to "Allow."
*Note: If you are using Google Chrome on a Mac computer with the Catalina Operating System, and you have never used the camera in your web browser before, there is an extra step needed. With the newest versions of Mac OS, you have to enable camera permissions in system settings for each app individually. To check this, go to the Settings app and select Security & Privacy. Click the "Camera" icon on the left, and make sure Google Chrome is included in the apps allowed to access your camera.
Fourth thing to check: Is the correct camera selected? Most newer devices have a camera built in, but you might have an external webcam connected to your device as well. At the top of the screen where you see the web address in the address bar, click the "camera" icon on the far right to see which camera is being tested, and choose a new one if necessary.
Fifth thing to check: Is the camera in use by another program? Double check to make sure you have closed any other windows, tabs, or applications that might be using your camera. This includes other video chat applications such as FaceTime, Skype, Google Hangouts, Zoom, or Facebook Messenger.
Sixth thing to check: If none of the above help solve the issue, do you have an antivirus, firewall, or parental control software running on your computer? Some of these programs block your camera from activating on unknown websites. If you are using a company-issued device, you may need to coordinate with your IT department to whitelist our domain. If you are using a personal device, you may need to investigate your antivirus, firewall, or parental control program settings.
First thing to check: Does your device have a microphone? If no, you will not be able to use this device to connect for a video visit. Please use another device. If you are a patient and do not have access to a device with a microphone, please contact your healthcare provider directly for further instructions.
Second thing to check: If the Connection Test cannot pick up sound, it will display instructions to make sure your microphone is enabled.
- Were you prompted to "Allow" or "Block" your microphone when you first started the test?
- Try refreshing your browser- does the prompt come up again? Click "Allow."
- No prompt? At the top of the screen, where you see the web address in the address bar, click on the "lock" icon to open the security details window. Make sure "Microphone" is set to "Allow."
*Note: If you are using Google Chrome on a Mac computer with the Catalina Operating System, and you have never used the microphone in your web browser before, there is an extra step needed. With the newest versions of Mac OS, you have to enable microphone permissions in system settings for each app individually. To check this, go to the Settings app and select Security & Privacy. Click the "Microphone" icon on the left, and make sure Google Chrome is included in the apps allowed to access your microphone.
Third thing to check: Is the correct microphone selected? Most newer devices have a microphone built in, but you might have an external microphone connected to your computer, or you may be using a headset or earbuds with a microphone feature. At the top of the screen where you see the web address in the address bar, click the "camera" icon on the far right to see which microphone is being tested, and choose a new one if necessary.
Fourth thing to check: Is the microphone in use by another program? Double check to make sure you have closed any other windows, tabs, or applications that might be using your microphone. This includes other video chat applications such as FaceTime, Skype, Google Hangouts, Zoom, or Facebook Messenger. If you're on a mobile device, this would also include phone calls.
If you cannot hear the audio portion, there are a few different things you should investigate:
- Using the same web browser, if you go to another website where you expect to hear sound, such as YouTube or Spotify, do you hear it?
- How does sound normally play on your device? Do you use the built-in speakers, do you plug headphones or external speakers into your device, or do you listen wirelessly with a bluetooth device?
- Is your device volume low or muted?
- Is your web browser tab muted?
Depending on the type of device and operating system you are using, there are many different ways to find the source of the issue. If you're not sure where to start, please click the "Need Help?" button at the top of the Connection Test page to start a live chat with our team.
To continue to troubleshoot on your own using a Windows computer, right-click the Sound icon in the System Tray and select "Troubleshoot sound problems."
To continue to troubleshoot on your own using a Mac computer, open your System Preferences and click the Sound icon to view a variety of sound settings.
This portion of the test checks for Bandwidth and Packet Loss. These indicators help us determine whether your internet is strong enough to connect successfully to your video visit from start to finish.
Whenever possible, we recommend using a wired connection or a strong WiFi signal, but cellular data can also work for a video visit when needed.
If you are having difficulty passing the internet connection portion of the test, or if you are experiencing connection issues in a video visit, we recommend the following tips to help improve your connection:
- Please close any windows, tabs, or applications you have open that you are not using, especially those connected to the internet.
- Some common culprits include other video chat applications (FaceTime, Skype, Google Hangouts, Zoom, Facebook Messenger), streaming platforms (Netflix, Hulu, Spotify, Pandora), and cloud storage applications (Google Drive, iCloud, Dropbox).
- You may consider restarting your router or modem, or simply repositioning yourself closer to it.
- Check your upload and download speeds using Speedtest by Ookla.
- Click "Go" to start the test, and take note of your download and upload Mbps.
- The ideal speed varies depending on a number of factors, but our support team may be able to help you identify what can be improved now, and what may need to be addressed with your internet service provider.
- Once you are in the video visit itself, you may enable "Low Resource Mode" by tapping the cog "Settings" icon on the right side of the screen. This will optimize your device's resource consumption for a successful video connection.
As always, Mend support is always ready and willing to help troubleshoot any issues you encounter. Please click the "Need Help?" button at the top of any screen in Mend or:
Email us: BestService@mendfamily.com
Call us: 800-490-2788