Allergy and Asthma Specialists patients, neighbors and friends,
I wanted to address the recent concerns regarding the Coronavirus COVID-19. Coronaviruses are a family of common cold viruses that typically cause mild respiratory illnesses.
Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a novel or new strain of Coronavirus believed to have started in China. The World Health Organization(WHO) has now classified the worldwide spread of COVID-19 as a pandemic.
If you or your family member is experiencing symptoms of fever cough, or shortness of breath AND have traveled to China, South Korea, Italy, Iran, or Japan OR have been exposed to someone sick with COVID-19 in the last 14 days, OR have been at large meetings or sporting events, you may call OWENSBORO HEALTH COVID-19 HOTLINE: 1 877 888-6647 to speak with a clinical expert regarding your concerns and receive guidance on the next steps to take.
Do not call our office in this instance because we don’t have the ability to test for COVID-19.
Here are some facts regarding COVID-19:
- Typical symptoms include fever, cough, shortness of breath
- Older adults (>60 years) and smokers seem to be at a higher risk of getting much sicker from COVID-19
- Children do not seem as susceptible to COVID-19
- 80 % of patients seem to have mild or no symptoms at all and have complete resolution of their disease.
- Current data is showing that co-infections (having more than one virus is low), meaning that if someone tests positive to RSV or Influenza, then they do not have COVID-19.
Please check information at cdc.gov, your local health department, and at the
OWENSBORO HEALTH COVID-19 HOTLINE: 1 877 888-6647 to be updated regarding COVID-19.
Here are some ways that you can help in the effort to combat COVID-19:
COUGH in your arm and not into the room.
WASH your hands frequently and for at least 20 seconds per washing.
AVOID large gatherings where the spread of COVID-19 is more common.
AVOID non-essential travel.
STAY HOME if you are sick or have flu-like symptoms.
STAY CALM and rely on information from reliable sources like the examples listed above.
BE PATIENT as recommendations may change as new information is obtained. Also, please keep in mind that healthcare facilities and offices are receiving a lot of calls right now. Emergency rooms and hospitals will be busy. Everyone in the community is doing the best they can to answer your questions and take care of you and your family.
BE KIND. No one is closing businesses, schools, sporting events, etc. because they want to.
This is necessary at this time to reduce the spread of the virus. Please consider helping your neighbors if they need something.
Pay attention for potential COVID-19 symptoms including fever, cough, and shortness of breath.
If you feel like you are developing these symptoms, seek advice from a health care provider.
This situation is changing daily, so pay attention to recommendations using the sources referenced above.
If you develop emergency warning signs for COVID-19, get medical attention immediately. In adults, emergency warning signs include:
Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
New confusion or inability to arouse
Bluish lips or face
Here at Allergy and Asthma Specialists, we want to help our patients and community members get through this challenging time. We will continue to see our patients as always, and take extra precautions in office to limit any potential community exposures. If you or your family members may have symptoms that could suggest infection with influenza or COVID-19, PLEASE CALL THE OFFICE BEFORE COMING TO YOUR APPOINTMENT SO THAT WE MIGHT TAKE THE APPROPRIATE STEPS FOR EVALUATION AND TREATMENT.
I am hopeful for a quick resolution to this viral pandemic, but we have to expect at least several weeks to months of COVID-19 disrupting our usual routines. Stay safe and keep informed.
Lee S. Clore, Jr., MD