Since this COVID-19 pandemic, people have steered away from going to healthcare facilities out of fear of catching the virus. However, this has caused more advanced disease states for patients who have Comorbidities.
Chief of Emergency and Trauma, Mark Winther from Bassett Healthcare Network says he sees lots of patients, but since the virus, there has been a decrease. “I saw a patient today that’s had stroke like symptoms and they’ve had it for two weeks.”
And they literally say, “I was petrified to come in.”
Bassett Healthcare Network is following the guidelines from the CDC for proper PPE and sanitation. “There’s a greater risk going to the supermarket or going out into a retail area compared to going into a healthcare facility.” -Winther
Bassett has utilized Telehealth to connect with their patients and assess them. “[We can get] that history and say you know what you should get a chest x-ray and we have a safe way of you getting a chest x-ray. Or I think you’re okay let’s check in, in a few days to see how you’re doing. Or you are exhibiting symptoms that I worry that you have COVID, lets arrange for safe testing and we’ll teach you how to quarantine and we will follow-up with you.”
Winther encourages patients to continue seeking routine care from their primary care doctor. If they do not have a provider, Bassett Healthcare, like many institutions is doing a triage line. Patients can call and share their symptoms, “And they will triage you with a nurse and send you on to a practitioner and they will make arrangements for testing or video visits or other thing like that.”