Skip to main content
Category

Covid-19 Epidemic

C19: Updated Self-Care and Risk Advice

By Commentary, Covid-19 Epidemic, Health Care Policy, Men's Health, Preventive Medicine, Primary Care, Women's Health 2 Comments

We are still in the midst of a pandemic that has subsided in Massachusetts but is still very much with us and could easily rebound. We need to remain vigilant in our self care. No real good news. US infections and deaths are at high levels and increasing. An effective and proven vaccine is not realistic until next year and then will take many months to distribute. Keep up your careful self care. This is depressing but real.

Read More

C19: Checkup Visits Beginning, Carefully

By Covid-19 Epidemic, Health Care Policy, Men's Health, Preventive Medicine, Primary Care, Women's Health No Comments

We have started scheduling comprehensive visits (“checkups”) for members in the office. Checkups will be divided into two parts, with video discussion one day and in-office physical exam and completion the subsequent day. This will allow thorough and effective comprehensive exams that will be safer by restricting in time spent in closed exam rooms. In addition we have detailed phone prescreening for Covid-19 and active virus point-of-care testing on arrival at the office to protect all of us.

Read More

OHC Office Visits This Summer

By Commentary, Covid-19 Epidemic, Preventive Medicine, Primary Care One Comment

We have begun in-office visits for appropriate urgent problems that are best handled with direct doctor-patient contact. We will continue to use primarily video visits through July (which are effective), but are considering offering some in-office checkups and routine follow-ups in August if allowed by the state, though such routine visits may not happen till after Labor Day. We all need more experience handling in-person care, which is now much more complex because of sanitation, separation and PPE requirements during this epidemic.

Read More

Covid-19: Masks, Hygiene, Distance Work. Updated Behavior and Risk Advice

By Commentary, Covid-19 Epidemic, Preventive Medicine, Primary Care 5 Comments

We are doing relatively well in Massachusetts. Wearing masks, frequent handwashing, and keeping social distance combine as an effective barrier against Covid-19. We need to maintain these practices and stay vigilant. Certain normal activities like going to the supermarket or Costco are low-risk, as is socializing outdoors. Cleaners and service-people are low-risk in your home. But indoor activities including in your living room or a restaurant remain high-risk to all concerned.

Read More

Opening OHC Office, Carefully; New Procedures; Office Covid-19 Tests

By Commentary, Covid-19 Epidemic, Preventive Medicine, Primary Care One Comment

We are now doing in-office visits for patients with urgent problems. Most visits will continue via remote video links. We have reconfigured our procedures to include previsit screening for remote or office visits. We will ask people to wait in their cars. We will minimize the number of patients in office and keep the visit itself to essentials. In addition, we now have ability to test every patient for active SARS-CoV-2 virus by a nasal swab and get results in 15 minutes. We expect to integrate this in all our visits now.

Read More

Staying Safe Out of Quarantine, Clarified

By Commentary, Covid-19 Epidemic, Health Care Policy, Preventive Medicine, Primary Care 2 Comments

We are beginning to leave quarantine. Covid-19 risks are much lower, but still present. We have to keep up our self protection appropriate to the risk, where greater intensity and duration of exposure increase risk. Use of handwashing, appropriate masks, social distancing, avoiding lingering in groups indoors, and home sanitization are all self-protection techniques. It is summer. Enjoy the outdoors, which is overwhelmingly safe.

Read More

Understanding Covid-19 Test Uncertainty and Managing Your Personal Risk

By Commentary, Covid-19 Epidemic, General Science, Health Care Policy, Preventive Medicine, Primary Care 22 Comments

I explain multiple and sometimes complex issues with the Covid-19 epidemic, starting with where we are in the infection epidemiology (new infections in Mass. are leveling off but are still high, deaths are growing). Then I explore the types and efficacy of biological tests (PCR and antibody), and why different people have different personal Covid risks and may make appropriately different responses in behavior and personal protective equipment. I tried to keep it short, but ultimately chose clarity over brevity.

Read More

Covid-19: Perhaps Some Progress, Worse Coming, Many Unknowns

By Commentary, Covid-19 Epidemic, Health Care Policy, Preventive Medicine, Primary Care 10 Comments

Today is Day 2 of Week 6 of the epidemic. We need to maintain rigorous self-quarantines and personal protection when outside, but there is hope and some data that the rate of new cases in Massachusetts is slowing. What we need most to get ourselves out of quarantine is an effective drug treatment, so that an infection does not carry high risk of hospitalization and ICU care or death. PPEs are still problematic and testing is not yet up to the need. The real bulge of cases here certainly seems likely to extend through May. Happy birthday, Happy birthday is still the key song.

Read More