(Updated October 26, 2020)
The battle against SARS-Cov-2 is far from over! Thanks to consistent social distancing and mask wearing, New Jersey managed to crush this virus and went from one of the most affected states in the country to one of the least. Unfortunately the case counts have gone up in the past few weeks. This is expected... but by caring for ourselves and each other, our community will overcome the virus. Most of us are suffering from COVID fatigue and growing tired of this major change to our lives... just remember the virus never gets tired and will take any opportunity to spread right now. We should prepare ourselves for the virus becoming more easily transmitted as we get into the cold season, as is typical of coronaviruses. It is likely we will see a spike in cases over the next few months, but this will not go on forever. Hang in there!
It is more important than ever to ensure you are protected against the flu by getting a flu vaccine! There are several reasons for this. Despite advances in testing, it is difficult to quickly tell COVID-19 from influenza as many symptoms are similar, so you may need to quarantine if you become ill. Further, our healthcare system could become acutely strained if both the flu and COVID-19 spike in the colder weather, which is expected to occur by many experts. This may mean resources to treat more severe cases of the flu are scarce. Contrary to rumor, you can't get the flu from the flu shot and except for the very few people who have had a severe reaction to the vaccine or with a history of the rare neurologic Guillain-Barre syndrome just about everyone can benefit from a flu vaccine. We will be hosting several socially-distanced flu shot clinic days over the next two months to help make receiving this safe and convenient.
Pandemic fatigue is a real thing. This new "normal" can take a serious toll on your sense of well-being. Many people are feeling increasingly isolated, sad, or even depressed. Substance abuse and drinking have spiked as people try to deal with the stress of this pandemic. Know that you are not alone, and we have helped many patients like you find a way to cope! Please don't hesitate to reach out to us if you feel the effects of this pandemic are becoming more than you can handle. We promise to be discrete.
People often ask whether they should avoid certain activities, and how at-risk they are. This can be a delicate balance between your individual risk because of your health status and the chance of being exposed to the virus when doing an activity in a certain location. Please do not delay any important medical or dental care right now, as it is very important that you stay as healthy as possible. We encourage you to refer to the state and federal websites below for regularly updated guidance.
There is a great disparity in how much COVID-19 activity there is across the country. Please be careful if you do travel, and be aware of the problems and restrictions that may be present in another state.
Our office remains open for regular office hours, and has taken many steps to be as safe a place as possible for our patients. When possible, we conduct visits via a secure telemedicine platform so that you can see and talk with your doctor from anywhere while preventing any unnecessary risk. Visits for mental health, routine follow-up, and many ailments can be seen in this way initially. Should you need to see your doctor in person, we provide an atmosphere that minimizes the coronavirus risk to your health.
We appreciate your understanding in abiding by new policies for your own safety.
A few things to keep in mind if you are physically entering our office:
The COVID-19 situation is rapidly evolving, so we have provided links at the bottom of this page to some dependable resources containing updates on the current status, description of symptoms, and best practices to minimize your risk.
IF YOU SUSPECT YOU MAY HAVE COVID-19 DO NOT COME TO OUR OFFICE UNLESS YOU HAVE CALLED AHEAD AND BEEN INSTRUCTED BY THE DOCTOR TO DO SO!
Our office has implemented several important temporary policies to minimize the chance of exposing our patients or staff to this virus. This includes:
There is no cure or vaccine for COVID-19. Most people fully recover and exhibit only mild symptoms often indistinguishable from the common cold, treated with OTC cold medications. For these people with symptoms, it is important to self-isolate to prevent spread of the disease.
Patients without symptoms but who are deemed direct contacts of people who have it are advised to self-quarantine. Click this link for an in-depth description of the differences in isolation and quarantine.
More severe cases require hospitalization, and some critical care. This is where we can improve survival with supportive care, ventilators (breathing machines) and potentially experimental medications. The reason it is so important to slow the spread of this disease is because such resources won't be available to everyone if too many cases occur at once.
Please heed any directives from state and local authorities to help curtail the spread of this disease!
New Jersey has developed a COVID-19 exposure alert tool. This app runs in the background on your phone and detects when you are within 6 feet of someone who later tests positive. It will then alert you to this exposure so you can get tested and protect yourself. This tool is developed with privacy high on the list - it does not 'track' you or follow your location. If most people start to use this app, it will make the pandemic much easier to control.
PREVENTION is our most important tool. The government has created a decent website with excellent recommendations at the CORONAVIRUS.GOV site. Some simple measures will help keep you from getting sick, and prevent you from passing on the infection to others.
The trusted resource UpToDate contains both physician-level and patient-level information about the disease that is updated regularly.
TESTING at this time remains very limited due to a severe shortage of testing capacity and because there are limited situations in which the result affects how your symptoms are managed. Please refer to the NJ COVID-19 site to determine if COVID-19 testing applies to your situation, and for a current location of testing sites.
CovidActNow.org is a regularly updated site that can give you an idea of the current status of the virus in each state.
Patients who have recovered from COVID-19 who are interested in donating convalescent plasma to potentially help others who are sick can go through the American Red Cross page for details.
Medicine... how it should be!
300A Princeton-Hightstown Road
East Windsor, NJ 08520
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