Pediatrics East - COVID19 Policy
March 15, 2020
Things have greatly changed since our initial Pediatrics East statement on COVID-19, just 10 days ago. Schools and churches have closed. Professional and youth sports have been canceled. Vacations and concerts are being rescheduled.
At Pediatrics East, we have been doing everything we can to stay up-to-date and proactive about how to help our patients, families, and the community. Through discussions and conferences with experts in infectious disease and pediatric emergency medicine, we will be implementing some policies to ideally eliminate, but hopefully minimize the risk of COVID-19 in our clinic and in our community.
These changes are not permanent; they are temporary adjustments to this unique situation.
What Will Change:
- We will be screening patients and their families on the appointment line to assess their risk of having COVID-19. If needed, we will arrange for patients to be screened, assessed, and perhaps tested for COVID-19 based on recommendations from the Health Department and from the LeBonheur medical staff. To be clear, we are not testing patients for COVID-19 here at Pediatrics East. Just last week, this system led to a patient being completely evaluated for this virus without coming to our clinic.
- Because we cannot screen walk-in patients, we have decided to suspend our walk-in morning clinics beginning Tuesday, March 17. NO WALK-IN APPOINTMENTS FOR NOW.
- For the upcoming weeks, we will be setting aside a certain block of time in the mornings for checkups for our youngest patients – newborns through 2-year-olds.
- The schedule for the remainder of the days will be open for any kind of appointment – sick visit, ADHD, checkups (both younger and older children).
- We have plans in place to intensify our already extensive cleaning of each patient room with specific measures to address COVID-19.
What Has Not Changed:
- We will still be available 7 days a week for office visits.
- We will still be available via Patient Portal and 24/7 phone line.
- We still love what we do. We love our patients and their families. We are prepared to gladly answer any questions and concerns on this rapidly changing situation along with any other issues.
- COVID-19 is not having a severe impact on children – unlike so many other serious infectious diseases! The illness is milder in children, and, although more than 6,000 people have died from this virus worldwide, there has not been one death under the age of 15.
It is our pleasure and privilege to take care of our patients and their families. We appreciate your patience and understanding during this difficult time. We know that some of these changes may not be well-received, but everything we are doing is in hopes of preventing and minimizing the spread of COVID-19. We will continue to follow the “best practice” recommendations, as we continue to ensure that our clinics are safe environments for our patients, their families, and our Pediatrics East staff.
Although this virus causes milder symptoms in children, it is a dangerous threat to others who are at high risk. These procedural policy changes at Pediatrics East are to protect our entire community – but especially our families who have children at home with leukemia, our families who have parents on chemotherapy, and our families who have grandparents with chronic cardiovascular and respiratory conditions. By following public recommendations to flatten the curve and minimize the spread of COVID-19, we are saving lives together!
We urge you to stay up-to-date with Pediatrics East, through our website, Facebook, and Twitter. We will continue to update these platforms with new or changing information over the coming weeks.
There can be various mixed messages about this virus and how it affects our lives. Rather than trusting every Facebook post or blog you come across, we recommend that you visit these reputable websites.
American Academy of Pediatrics- Healthy Children