General Medicine and COVID-19: What You Should Know

The COVID-19 pandemic remains at the forefront of virtually everyone’s mind. Keeping yourself and your family safe are priorities shared with many Americans. Though it seems as though time shuts down during this crisis, there are some aspects of life that won’t obey isolation-in-place rules. Your general health still has its ups and downs and even if you’re not affected by the novel coronavirus, you may still need medical care as you always have.

Dr. Richard Blanchar and the team at Bayview General Medicine understand your concerns and urge you not to ignore other health issues while the COVID-19 crisis disrupts daily lives. While means of treatment and consultation change, it’s still important to stay on top of your preventive health care. Don’t hesitate to contact the office when you have any medical concerns. Together, you and Dr. Blanchar decide how to proceed.

In the meantime, here’s what you need to know about COVID-19, protecting yourself and your family, and living your life with a minimum of inconvenience.

Protecting yourself and your community

Because COVID-19 results from a new (novel) virus, your body has no natural resistance to the infection. While work on a vaccine proceeds at a furious pace, the most optimistic predictions indicate it may be 2021 before immunization becomes widely available.

The best way to avoid getting COVID-19 is by avoiding initial exposure to the coronavirus. The primary means of infection with COVID-19 is between people, one who’s infected with the virus and the other who’s not. One of the suspected challenges of this coronavirus is that infected people without symptoms may actively spread the virus.

Protect yourself by:

Washing your hands frequently

Use soap and water, since soap dissolves the fats that surround the virus. Wash for 20 seconds, particularly after you’ve been in public places. Use a hand sanitizer of at least 60% alcohol when soap and water aren’t available.

Keeping your distance

Stay home as much as you can and avoid contact with others. Remember that people who can infect you may not appear to be sick. It’s possible that you are one of them, so avoiding close contact is as much about protecting others as it is protecting yourself.

Using a cloth mask over nose and mouth

This is primarily to protect others in case you’re infected and not symptomatic. A cloth mask isn’t a substitute for social distancing.

Cover coughs and sneezes

Cough or sneeze into your elbow or a tissue to prevent the aerosol spray that might carry coronavirus particles through the air. Dispose of tissues and wash your hands immediately to avoid infecting surfaces.

Clean and disinfect surfaces

Step up your housekeeping efforts by cleaning and disinfecting commonly used surfaces in your home, surfaces that everyone touches, such as doorknobs, light switches, telephones, faucets, sinks and countertops. While soaps can disable the virus, using a disinfecting household cleaner takes protection to the next level.

Some health conditions can increase your risk of complications from COVID-19, so stay on top of non-coronavirus illnesses and conditions by seeking prompt medical assistance when necessary. Contact Dr. Blanchar and our team by phone or online. We’re ready to help.

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