During these unsettling times we want to remind you that our practice continues to have your health and the health of our community forefront in our mind. We are closely following current recommendations by the CDC and monitoring for changes daily. In light of the current COVID-19 pandemic we want to assure you that we are open for your healthcare needs and have taken the precautions to do so safely. In addition to our in-office visits, we are pleased to offer telehealth visits for new and established patients.
Our expert panel discusses COVID19 and how it will affect reopening schools this fall.
Today’s topics include:
• How to keep our children safe as they go back to school
• What does social distancing look like in the classroom?
• What is the Phoenixville Area School district doing to help families now?
To safeguard the health of our patients and staff we are implementing the following:
1. Our staff are being screened daily for cough and fever. Employees exhibiting cough and fever will not be permitted to work.
2. Masks are required for all staff AND patients who have an in-office appointment.
3. Our staff is being instructed to wash their hands before and after each patient interaction. We recommend you wash your hands frequently, as well. Good Handwashing Technique (link to www.cdc.gov/handwashing/when-how-handwashing.html) We have hand sanitizer available.
4. Our offices are being cleaned according to CDC guidelines in conjunction with extra sterilization practices.
5. Patients are being screened in advance of appointments to rule out active cough, fever, shortness of breath, loss of taste or smell.
6. We are offering Telemedicine visits for as many patients as possible.
7. Patients who have an in-office appointment are instructed to wait in their vehicle; when called you will be ushered directly to an exam room.
8. Patients who have an in-office appointment will have their temperature taken upon arrival.
9. We will not be using nebulizers in the office for delivering any medications to avoid disseminating the virus.
10. We will be spacing out all of our allergy shot (SCIT) patient’s shots to q 4-6 week intervals (even those currently on build up) so they do not have to enter the office any more frequently.
11. We will make an effort to postpone elective allergy procedures that can be deferred such as skin testing, drug challenges, and food challenges
12. Patient who receive Biological drugs in our office that are approved for home administration by the FDA and are stable, do not need to wait 30 min after their shot.
13. Please contact our office if you are on an immunosuppressant (long term oral steroids, Plaquenil, methotrexate, cyclosporin) prescribed by a provider in our practice, as we may consider a dose adjustment. Do not stop your medication without a doctor’s advice.
This test, recently released by LabCorp and Quest, is vastly different than the previously (and still) available test, which measures the presence of viral RNA protein by a nasopharyngeal swab and helps diagnose active infection.
How is the new test different?
The new test takes a small sample of blood and measures antibodies to the virus that are formed upon exposure to the virus. The best time to look for these antibodies are 2 weeks or more after the illness. Results are expected in 2-3 days.
Why get tested?
This test will be useful if you know or suspect that you had COVID-19 at least 14 days ago or are concerned about exposure.
We are hopeful that this test will assist us in finding out who has been exposed and who might have some degree of immunity. It is a start in our efforts as a community to get back to work and play. Of course, it does not negate our need to abide by social distancing and good hygiene in our efforts to stop the spread of the virus.
How can I get the new COVID-19 antibody test?
The test must be ordered by a physician. Schedule a telehealth visit with us at 610-415-1100 to see if the antibody test is right for you!
Replay: Ask The Experts: Dr. Anthony Fauci’s former NIH fellow, our own Carol Actor, MD. Is it a Cold, Flu, Allergies or Coronavirus? What you need to know and how to get testing if you need it.
or visit: clinicaltrials.gov and enter study number NCT04334954. Anyone interested in participating can send an email to: email@example.com
and state that they are interested in participating in NCT04334954 (clinicaltrials.gov identifier)
Principal Investigator: Matthew J. Memoli, MD, National Institue of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)