As we recently moved into Phase 2 in Washington, DC with a certain loosening of restrictions, not only is it a time to enjoy a lunch or dinner at a favorite restaurant on an outdoor patio but also a time to focus on your health and reschedule or newly schedule medical care that you had to postpone or cancel in what may seem like a different lifetime ago. A Kaiser Family Foundation poll found that 48% of Americans said they or a family member had skipped or delayed medical care because of the pandemic, and 11% of them said the person’s condition worsened as a result of the delayed care.
Medical groups have noted a sharp drop-off in emergency patients across the country. Some, including the American College of Emergency Physicians, American College of Cardiology and American Heart Association, have publicly urged people concerned about their health to seek care. Dr. William Jaquis, President of the American College of Emergency Physicians, said the anecdotes he’s heard of people delaying care have been troubling, with patients suffering heart attacks or strokes at home. He urged people not to skip going to the emergency room and pointed out the many safety precautions hospitals are taking to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
At The GW Medical Faculty Associates and GW Hospital, we’ve ramped up our outpatient and inpatient care with rigorous measures to keep you safe. But if you don’t feel comfortable going to a provider’s office, you can also get virtual health care with one of our providers. This convenient option allows you to visit with your provider via your smartphone, computer, or tablet wherever you are.
APPOINTMENTS TO ADD TO YOUR TO-DO LIST – TODAY
To schedule an appointment via phone, please call (202) 741-3000 or for a virtual health appointment, please call 202-677-MED3 (6333), or book an in-person or virtual health appointment online.
Routine preventative exams are one of the best ways to keep you healthy and pick up on medical issues early, before they become more serious, and to monitor the status of ongoing conditions, such as diabetes and high blood pressure.
People need health screenings at different intervals, depending on factors such as age, gender, health status and family history. If it’s time for you to have a screening, like a mammogram, colonoscopy or prostate exam, don’t delay. If your doctor has been monitoring your blood pressure, blood glucose or other health indicators, it’s time to also take care of that.
If you had an appointment, screening or procedure and were supposed to return for a follow-up visit, don’t delay it any longer. Just like preventive appointments, follow-up care is critical in keeping you healthier and detecting worsening health issues as early as possible.
If COVID-19 delayed your plans for a non-emergency procedure or surgery, now is a good time to reschedule it. The longer you wait, the more serious any underlying condition may get and now is a good time to reschedule.
It’s imperative to keep children vaccinated according to recommended vaccine schedules. Also, we as adults need vaccines, including the flu, pneumonia or shingles vaccines - that you shouldn’t ignore or delay.