This is being a very anxious time for all of us. Many changes have been forced upon us all quite rapidly. We believe it is critically important that people follow the public health guidance that is being given. Stay home as much as possible, maintain social distancing, and practice good infection control hygiene.
As a local medical provider, we plan to remain open to support our families and help them through this crisis, while maintaining the strictest measures we can to control the spread of the Coronavirus infection. The most important of these measures is our institution of telemedicine visits this week. Despite some technical hiccups, we have successfully completed over 50 of these visits so far. On Friday we upgraded our internet speeds to improve the quality of these connections and we are getting better at it every day. There are some obvious limitations to this technology, and we are all longing for the days when we can once again lay our hands on sick children safely and examine them properly. Until then, telemedicine provides our best tool to help worried parents through this difficult time and keep people out of the overwhelmed emergency rooms unnecessarily. With the additional advantage of seeing the children and conducting a limited “virtual exam,” we can also appropriately triage those children who truly do need to go, while providing better management for those who do not.
We are, however, keeping the office open for well children. It continues to be imperative, perhaps now more than ever, that children receive their vaccines and maintain their overall health, so long as we can provide this care safely. All of the safety measure we have implemented over the past 2 weeks remain in place: additional cleaning measures, the removal of toys and books that might transmit infections, careful distancing of patients and moving people from their cars directly into exam rooms. The clinical staff are following “universal precautions” for all patient care that now includes gloves, masks and face shields. And, of course, the “sick patients” are mostly being cared for at home now. We understand if you would prefer to postpone your regularly scheduled visits under these circumstances, especially for older school age children. We will gladly accommodate you by moving appointments to a future date. Unfortunately, though, this outbreak of Coronavirus may be with us for quite some time and life may not get back to normal for several months. It is our goal to make the office environment as safe as possible in the meantime, for our patients and for our team, so you can be confident bringing well children to the office.
We will keep you updated as we go along. Please, stay safe and stay well.