Can Healthcare Providers Help Me with Coronavirus?

Coronavirus has been the topic of discussion on all news outlets and social media platforms in recent weeks. The COVID-19 pandemic is one of the most significant healthcare crises in recent memory.

As the number of cases in the US grows, both among international travelers and people who have had no known contact with the coronavirus, fear is growing in communities. The CDC has been working hard to keep our healthcare workers prepared for coronavirus patients, but here’s everything you need to know!

How Does Coronavirus Testing Work? 

Some people think that if they’re having symptoms and they go to the emergency room or urgent care they’ll immediately be tested for coronavirus, but that isn’t the case. Test kits for coronavirus are extremely limited and only people who display severe symptoms and have tested negative for the flu, along with other conditions, can be tested for coronavirus. 

However, AFC Urgent Care Waltham provides COVID-19 testing for patients with the help of a third party. Patients that meet clinical guidelines for testing, such as contact with a known COVID-19 patient or international travel within 14 days, can schedule a test.

Should I Go to the ER if I Have Symptoms of Coronavirus? 

If you have symptoms of coronavirus, DO NOT rush to your local ER or urgent care. Instead you should stay home, avoid contact with other people, and call your primary health care provider.

If you don’t have a primary healthcare provider, contact your local health department. You’ll be asked about your symptoms, recent travels, and other health history. If you’re considered high risk to be positive for coronavirus, your health department and primary care provider will work to secure a test. You should only go to the ER if you’re having difficulty breathing or a high fever that needs immediate medical attention. 

Who’s at Risk for serious COVID-19 symptoms?

At this point, anybody can contract coronavirus, but some people are at a higher risk. Elderly people, people who are immunocompromised, and people with underlying health conditions are at the highest risk for a severe case of coronavirus. Young, healthy people that contract COVID-19 may be able to fight off the symptoms with little to no treatment.

It’s important to remember that if you are one of those young and healthy people, quarantining yourself at the first sign of symptoms is the only way to avoid spreading the illness to other, more high risk, individuals. 

The coronavirus pandemic is frightening, but healthcare workers are doing everything they can to keep you safe and healthy. Remember to practice good hand hygiene, avoid close contact with people, and stay home if you have any reason to believe you’ve been exposed to the coronavirus.