By: Dr. Doron Ilan
It is distressing enough to get hurt during normal times, but getting hurt during the COVID-19 pandemic can cause immense additional stress and fear. What should one do if injured during this difficult time?
Should I go to the ER and risk being infected with Coronavirus? Should I go to urgent care? I have heard there are a lot of coronavirus cases there too. Should I go to my doctor’s office? Are they open? Is it safe?
First of all, you should get medical care for your injury. We see that many patients are not getting the care they need because they are afraid to leave the house or go to a medical facility. This is turning injuries that could be treated easily right away into more serious conditions. If you are seriously injured (crooked limb, excessive bleeding, head injury, etc), without question, you should call 911 and go to the ER. Otherwise, there are probably better options. The first step would be to call your doctor’s office (primary care or specialist depending on the condition) and see if they are available to see you. If they are unavailable, an urgent care office is probably your best option. You should avoid visiting the ER unless you are seriously injured, as most are currently overwhelmed.
If you have an Orthopedic injury or develop a musculoskeletal condition, Northeast Orthopedics and Sports Medicine is available to treat your condition in a safe environment. We are open for Orthopedic Urgent Care, regular in-person office visits, and Telemedicine visits with onsite x-ray and ultrasound. Your safety is our priority. Many patients can be seen from the comfort of their home via Telemedicine, and for in-office visits, we have taken significant steps to keep you safe in all of our offices including: limiting the number of patients and staff in the office; prescreening patients for any signs of illness or contact with coronavirus – and keeping them away from the office; separating waiting room chairs; providing the opportunity to wait in your car until your doctor is ready for your visit; providing the option to fill out forms online prior to visiting; offering minimal wait times to see a doctor; ensuring all staff are in proper Personal Protective Equipment (masks, etc); wiping down/sanitizing all patient areas after each patient; making certain all staff sanitize hands before and after each patient; requiring all patients to wear a face-covering; making hand sanitizer available throughout offices; providing priority scheduling (first hour of day) for older patients and immunocompromised patients, and restricting office to the patient only (unless a minor or disabled patient who can bring one parent or aide).
To see one of our specialists, please call any of our offices and you will be given the option to be seen the same or next day in the office or via telemedicine. Stay safe!