As we continue to learn more about the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), we are writing to you today to share our efforts to address patient hygiene and respiratory etiquette in our clinics. Common sense and basic cold and flu season hygiene are the best resources at this point, so let’s all be vigilant about those practices. We aren’t trying to add stress or anxiety regarding COVID-19. However, we take the health of our patients and practitioners seriously and want to take proper precautions.
All our original policies on cold and flu hygiene are unchanged: If you have an uncontrollable cough or sneezing, sore throat, fever, or acute gastrointestinal symptoms such as nausea, vomiting or diarrhea, please stay home until you have been asymptomatic and without fever over 100.4F for at least 48 hours.
However, we are making a few adjustments to address current issues around COVID-19. It appears that, to date, the majority of cases involve mild illness. Please DO NOT come into the clinic if you or anyone in your household have any of the following sign and symptoms of COVID-19:
- Shortness of breath
If you arrive at the clinic with any of these, you will be turned away.
As the week unfolds, we are establishing several new protocols and procedures in an effort to address the spread of this virus.
- We have hand sanitizing units placed all around our clinics. Please use them.
- We are using disinfecting wipes to clean/disinfect tabletops, desks, door handles, etc. on a twice daily basis.
- Patients will not be permitted in the clinic if they have a fever or a fever mitigated by medication. Additionally, if a patient shows signs of respiratory illness, that patient should stay home and will be asked to leave the clinic.
- Stay home if a family/household member is sick with the above symptoms, since COVID-19 may take 2 weeks from exposure to symptoms.
- Please be aware that we may have possible last minute closures if staff or their children have any signs or symptoms.
The latest situation summary updates are available on CDC’s coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) web page.
There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. However, as a reminder, CDC always recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases, including:
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash, and wash your hands asap.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
People who think they may have been exposed to COVID-19 should contact their primary healthcare provider immediately and before presenting to their healthcare provider’s office. Seek medical attention if you have difficulty breathing or cannot keep yourself hydrated. If you have an underlying health condition such as asthma, diabetes, or an immune dysfunction, contact your doctor sooner. It is essential to follow your healthcare provider’s office protocol for being evaluated.