This edition of the Advent Health Morning Briefing focused on how local emergency departments are handling COVID-19 cases in Central Florida, and what to do if you or a loved one suspects they have come in contact with someone who has been diagnosed with the virus.
Dr. Ramon Nunez, emergency medical director at AdventHealth Celebration, and Dr. Ademola Adewale, assistant program for the Emergency Medicine Residency at AdventHealth East Orlando, discussed how emergency departments in our region are well equipped to address the challenges of COVID-19 and how individuals should think about emergency care during this pandemic.
Highlights from the briefing include:
Do not go to an emergency room to get tested for COVID-19. If you believe you have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, do a self-assessment for risk factors. If you show no symptoms and are in good health, please self-isolate for 14 days. If you feel you need to get a test, wait five days then proceed to an urgent care facility such as Centra Care, which has extended hours and offers the rapid test and the PCR test. The county health department also provides COVID testing.
Seek emergency care if you feel sick and are symptomatic with COVID-19 symptoms, such as shortness of breath or high fever. If you feel ill and have a health concern you feel is putting you in danger, go to the hospital to be examined. You know your body better than anyone else, and if something doesn’t feel right, please come in and get it checked out.
If you are experiencing signs of a heart attack or stroke or have been in an accident and require medical attention, go directly to an emergency room. All emergency departments are following safety and cleaning protocols to keep you safe from COVID-19. Do not let fear of the virus keep you from seeking care when you need it most.
On seeking medical care
“If you feel sick and you have concerns, come to the hospital. We are here to care for you. I do not want our population to play doctor. Come, we’ll check you out,” said Adewale. “Peace of mind is priceless, and I want to give you that reassurance in case something else is going on.”
On dealing with children who may have COVID-19 symptoms
“Prevention is better than any treatment,” said Nunez. “If your child starts to develop symptoms, be smart and wise about it. Try to stay home and take precautions. As they improve, they may resume their activities as tolerated. Usually, these symptoms resolve before the two weeks are up. The pediatric population, because they are young and healthy, are resilient and they recover well.”
Source: Advent Health
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