August 17, 2020 Healthy Living

Don’t Delay Care Because of COVID-19: Four Reasons Why

In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, you may be hesitant to schedule an appointment with your doctor. While it’s normal to be anxious about the risks, it is more important now than ever to address any acute or chronic care needs and to keep your regularly scheduled check-ups.

Four Reasons to Act Now

By seeking care now, you may be able to:

  1. Decrease your risk for coronavirus.  People with serious underlying health conditions are more vulnerable to COVID-19 infection than others, and tend to experience more severe complications if they are infected. That’s why managing chronic conditions like diabetes, heart failure, or high blood pressure is as important as other precautions for avoiding coronavirus, such as wearing a mask.
  2. Schedule an appointment while New York’s COVID-19 infection rate is relatively low. As of this writing, New York has been experiencing a decline in new coronavirus infections, hospitalizations, and deaths, but as you know, that trend can be unpredictable.
  3. Reduce your risk for more serious health issues. If you are overdue for a cancer screening or have a chronic, untreated condition such as diabetes, heart or lung disease, or high blood pressure, you have a higher risk for more advanced, possibly life-threatening disease.  The earlier these issues are identified and treated, the better your health outcome will be.
  4. Avoid preventable disease.  Adhering to the recommended schedule for immunizations will allow you to avoid preventable illnesses, such as hepatitis and flu, among others.

Safety Precautions Are in Effect

In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, medical practices have adopted a number of enhanced safety measures designed to protect you from infection.  Depending on the practice, these may include:

  • Mandatory masks or face coverings for staff and patients.
  • Social distancing precautions.
  • Enhanced cleaning and disinfecting of the office, especially high-touch surfaces.
  • Availability of hand sanitizer.
  • Separate waiting rooms or appointment times for well and sick patients.
  • Limitations on the number of visitors. 

You may wish to call your doctor’s office in advance to find out what precautions are in effect. If you are still anxious about a doctor’s visit, a telehealth appointment may be an appropriate option.  However, bear in mind that there’s no substitute for an in-person health evaluation, and certain care, such as vaccinations, can’t be administered virtually.

Prepare for your visit. Before your appointment, we recommend you write down any questions you have (including questions about your medications) and make a note of any specialists you’ve seen recently. Ask your doctor about immunizations and screenings that may be right for you, and if you’re an older adult, be sure to mention if you have fallen since your last visit.

Adele O'Connell
About Author

Adele joined CDPHP in 2004 as an internal communications and event specialist. She then spent eight years coordinating the company’s community relations and corporate events program, in which capacity she worked with a host of non-profit organizations and co-chaired the CDPHP annual Charity of Choice campaign. Currently, she is a communications specialist and coordinator of corporate member engagement and serves on the boards of two local charities. Prior to CDPHP, Adele served as a legislative assistant for a trade association and as an acquisitions and developmental editor, specializing in educational and medical publishing. She earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Rosemont College.

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