Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

A message to our patients: (UPDATED) – March 22th, 2020

 

(UPDATE) – March 22th, 2020
The Pediatric Center has launched telemedicine in addition to our regular in-office appointments to provide you with an alternative option to consult with your provider. Learn more about Virtual Visits here.

 

(UPDATE) – March 21th, 2020
The State of New Jersey has made available an information portal with the latest official information about COVID-19. We urge you to get your information from official and validated sources of information. New Jersey COVID-19 Information Hub

 

(UPDATE) – March 17th, 2020
Our responsibility is to protect our patients during these unprecedented times. To combat the possible exposure of our children we are instituting these following changes to how our office operates. We understand that we must be open and available to take care of our children in this very challenging time.

Effective immediately

  • 8:30 AM – 12:30 PM Available hours for Scheduled and CLEARED Acute Care Visits only
  • 2:00 PM – 5:30 PM Available hours for Scheduled Well Visits and Scheduled and CLEARED Acute Care Visits
  • No Walk-In Hours
  • No Waiting Room Available

Why is The Pediatric Center Making These Changes?
We have always provided completely separate waiting rooms and exam rooms for our sick and well patients but are taking these extra steps as further precautions to limit interaction between our patients as per CDC guidelines.

What Happens if You Show Up For Our Normal Walk-In Hours (with no scheduled appointment)?
You will be asked to return to your car and to call the office to schedule an appointment. We know this is a drastic departure from what you normally experience – everything we do is designed to keep you and our staff safe! Most likely we will be able to accommodate you with an office or a Virtual visit right away!

What Does CLEARED to Enter The Office Mean?

  • Patient and immediate family member must NOT have a cough AND a fever (at the same time) in the past 14 days.
  • AND

  • Patient and immediate family member must NOT have traveled outside the US in the past 14 days.
  • AND

  • Patient and immediate family member must NOT have had direct contact with anyone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19.

How Are You Cleared?
For your Scheduled Appointment, you and your child will be greeted and cleared to enter the office by our staff in our entryway vestibule.

What Happens If You Are NOT Cleared?
We’re still here to help! We will ask you to return to your car and to call the office to schedule a Virtual visit with one of our providers. Most likely we’ll be able to accommodate you right away! We’ll give you all the details if you are NOT Cleared.

What Can You Do to Help Keep Your Appointment Moving?
Please, if possible, do NOT bring siblings or anyone else beside the patient to the office

 

(UPDATE) – March 12th, 2020
As of 3/12/2020, travelers from China, Italy, Iran, Japan, and South Korea are advised and required to self quarantine for 14 days. This also now includes ANY TRAVEL FROM EUROPE TO ALSO SELF QUARANTINE FOR 14 DAYS!!

Now IF you have the following history:

  • Close and prolonged contact with a person who is a laboratory confirmed case of COVID19
  • has traveled from the following “hot spots” (China, Japan, South Korea, Italy and Iran) and developed symptoms within 14 days after travel.
  • has been in close and prolonged contact with ill travelers from those countries
    AND have the following symptoms :
  • FEVER
  • COUGH
  • DIFFICULTY BREATHING

Contact your healthcare provider at 908-508-0400, and tell them about your symptoms and your travel history (or if exposed to a COVID-19 diagnosed patient.). They will then be able to determine if you need additional evaluation.

As per present protocol guidance is that you call prior to going to a medical facility.

 

(UPDATE) – March 9th, 2020
The staff at the Pediatric Center are evaluating and implementing protocols and measures should an outbreak affect our community. We are monitoring developments continuously as this is a very fluid and dynamic situation.

We recommend that anyone who has traveled to an area that has been impacted by Coronavirus to follow the CDC and NJ Department of Health guidelines: 

  • Take your temperature.
  • Avoid contact with others. 
  • Do not travel while sick.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing.
  • Clean your hands often by washing them with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains 60%–95% alcohol immediately after coughing, sneezing or blowing your nose. Soap and water should be used if hands are visibly dirty.

Please follow instructions during this time. Your cooperation is integral to the ongoing public health response to try to slow the spread of this virus.

 

If you have any questions please contact our office or the NJ Health Department who has a 24 hour hotline with medical professionals available to answer your questions 1-800-222-1222

 

(UPDATE) – March 5th, 2020

Quarantines, Self-monitoring and Isolation – What does that mean?

 

These are unprecedented times with a Coronavirus pandemic affecting the entire world.  To help our patients better understand when health officials tell you or your family what measures you need to do, here is a brief summary.

Self Quarantine/QUARANTINE – When we tell people that they need to self quarantine OR be quarantined  due to international travel or prolonged exposure to COVID positive people, it means the following:  EVEN IF YOU DO NOT FEEL SICK!!

  • STAY IN YOUR HOME
  • STAY AWAY FROM PEOPLE AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE DURING YOUR TIME OF SELF QUARANTINE/ QUARANTINE
  • For those who don’t live alone should do their best to retreat to their room or find a separate area in their home, and they shouldn’t go out shopping, eating or socializing.
  • If you are under a self-quarantine because of possible exposure AND  then develop a fever, a cough or shortness of breath, CALL your doctor, local hospital or public health department to find out what to do.
  • If you are under self quarantine and need to seek medical care – CALL YOUR DOCTOR to see what you need to do to get care.  They may be able to do telemedicine or will direct your care if it is urgent

SELF MONITORINGSelf-monitoring might include regularly checking your temperature and watching for signs of a respiratory illness, such as fever, cough or shortness of breath with the above Self quarantine measures as above.

ISOLATION–   Isolation is when you are sick, either at home or in the hospital and

the person in isolation would be required to wear a mask when leaving their room or traveling from home to a medical facility to try to prevent spreading droplets that might contain the virus.  PLUS the above Quarantine measures MUST BE FOLLOWED. 

SOCIAL DISTANCING – is used to prevent spread of infection – The idea is to try to empower people to break the lines of transmission.”

  • It means not shaking hands, avoiding crowds, standing several feet from other people and, most important, staying home if you feel sick and washing your hands.
  • Governments are doing it when they close schools. We’re seeing it in the sports world, with no-spectator games or the postponement of sporting events. Museums, theaters and concert halls where large groups of people gather are closing their doors. And the closing of restaurants where you cannot be seated and served.

 

So why should you care even if you are the population that may not get very sick?

Public health is all about the public. Individual risk may be low. And, thus, the inconvenience of some of these measures may seem high. But taking steps like these will benefit the population as a whole. An individual who doesn’t get very sick might still pass the infection along to others, including parents, siblings, grandparents, neighbors, people on the bus, people in stores or medical offices/hospitals

Some of those people, in turn, may end up in the hospital. A surge of patients with the virus could fill beds also needed by a broad range of other people, such as cancer patients, newborns or car accident victims, which will overwhelm our healthcare systems.  

So even coronavirus is a condition that may not pose a threat to the individual but it poses a threat to the community as a whole.

 

The Staff at the Pediatric Center.

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