Coronavirus Frequently Asked QuestionsWe want to assure you that we are taking the precautions necessary to ensure both our patients and staff are safe.
We’ve been asked lots of questions. We hope you will find answers here!
I feel sick, what should I do?
Call your health center, please do NOT come in unless instructed to do so. We will have clinical staff available to talk to you by phone.
I have an upcoming medical or dental appointment, not related to Coronavirus. Should I come in?
For medical appointments, the answer is yes. Patients should call in advance to confirm whether they will be seen in person or virtually. For dental, we made a temporary adjustment to our services. At this time, we will NOT be doing routine or non-urgent dental procedures such as oral exams and dental cleanings. We will, however, provide services to patients to relieve severe dental pain and/or risk of infection. If you have any questions, just give us a call at (315) 781-8448.
How can I maintain good oral health during this time?
COVID-19 can be spread through coughing and sneezing so this is an important topic. Keeping good oral health and practicing cough etiquette during this time can reduce the chance of the virus spreading. We recommend rinsing your mouth with 1% peroxide or Listerine for 30 seconds daily.
I usually bring my children or family members to my appointments, is this appropriate?
Please come to your appointments alone, if possible. As part of social distancing guidelines, we are reducing the number non-patient visitors to our health centers.
Will patients be screened when they enter the health center?
Yes! Patients will be asked a series of questions such as travel history and symptoms. Their answers will determine our next steps. We will be separating sick patients with symptoms and placing them in a private room as quickly possible.
What can you do to help?
Please arrive at your scheduled appointment time, no need to arrive early. If you have a short wait time before your appointment, please practice social distancing in the waiting area by maintaining a minimum of six feet between yourself and other people.
Important information about Coronavirus.
Learn more about how the virus spreads: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prepare/transmission.html
How to protect yourself: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prepare/prevention.html
World Health Organization (WHO) Short FAQ Video: https://youtu.be/OZcRD9fV7jo
More Frequently Asked Questions about the Coronavirus
Can I communicate online instead of calling the health center?
Yes! If you have a Patient Portal account, this is an excellent time to use it by going to our website and clicking on Patient Portal at the top of the homepage. If you’d like to set up a Patient Portal account, email us at email@example.com and you’ll be contacted by the clinical staff.
What are we doing at our health centers to protect our patients and staff?
We want to assure you that we are taking the precautions necessary to ensure both our patients and staff are safe. We are following OSHA guidelines for infection control including extensive cleaning procedures to protect all. After patients leave, we clean frequently touched surfaces using EPA registered disinfectants.
We are screening our patients asking them qualifying questions, and if they have symptoms, separating these patients and placing them in a private exam room as quickly possible. Afterward, we are disinfecting the exam rooms.
In addition, we are limiting the number of people in our waiting rooms to 20 and expediting rooming procedures so that patients are moved to patient care areas more quickly, as they come available.
Further protection is provided by using personal protective equipment (PPE) such as masks, gloves, gowns, and goggles when needed. And we are emphasizing hand hygiene and cough etiquette.
If anyone thinks they may have the Coronavirus, we ask that they NOT come into the health centers but instead, give us a call at (315) 781-8448.
Lastly, we are working with the NYS Department of Health (NYSDOH) and Center for Disease Control (CDC) so that we’re abreast of all developments and are ready to adjust as needed.
What other ways can I get medical care without coming into the health center?
Patient Portal – if you’re already signed up to use the Patient Portal, please do so. We have staff managing the site for any questions and will get back to you quickly during business hours. If you’d like to set up a Patient Portal account, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and you’ll be contacted by one of our staff members.
I have questions regarding the Coronavirus, how can I get them answered?
You have several options and we’d recommend that you try one of these prior to coming to our health centers:
Call the Coronavirus Hotline. If you have questions about the virus that isn’t specific to your health situation, your first option is to call the Novel Coronavirus Hotline which is run by the NYS Department of Health (NYSDOH) 24/7 at 1-888-364-3065 or visit their website https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/home
Call our health centers. You can also call our health centers at (315) 781-8448, however, you should be aware that wait times may be longer due to high call volume.
Patient Portal. You can ask questions, make appointments, or check lab results through the online Patient Portal. If you’re already signed up to use the Patient Portal, please use it by accessing it through our website. We have staff managing the site for questions and will get back to you quickly during business hours. If you’d like to set up a Patient Portal account, email us at email@example.com and you’ll be contacted by one of our staff members.
Can I schedule a Telehealth (virtual) visit instead of going to a health center?
Of course! You can be seen by a provider without going to the health center for certain medical conditions. Telehealth uses a HIPAA compliant video connection between you and your clinician. It can also be used for behavioral health visits with a therapist. To learn more about Telehealth, please watch this video: http://localcommunityhealth.com/telehealth-for-patients/
What conditions can be evaluated by using Telehealth?
Many medical conditions can lend themselves to being evaluated by Telehealth. Call your provider to see if a Telehealth appointment is right for you.