Good news! More people are able to schedule a face-to-face appointment, procedure or surgery at Premier Medical Group’s many locations. While we did not stop performing in-person appointments during the Covid-19 pandemic, several factors reduced the number of people who were eligible for these visits. Previously, these were limited to emergency and “must-see” cases.
A greater share of patients seeking in-office appointments, procedures and surgeries will be able to do so. This change is slated for Monday, May 18, 2020 and Premier’s staff are scheduling appointments.
Why Were Face-to-face Consultations and Treatments Limited?
Following New York State orders, elective surgeries – such as those that do not address a medical emergency – were paused on March 22, 2020 and permitted to resume on April 29, 2020.
Premier continued to limit these visits as part of an ongoing effort to reduce exposure of physicians, staff and patients to the coronavirus. When appropriate, people who sought help with non-life-threatening issues were encouraged to schedule visits via our Telemedicine program. Additionally, many routine or elective surgeries and procedures were delayed.
Covid-19 ‘Stabilized’ in Our Region
Now that the Covid-19 pandemic has stabilized in regions with Premier locations, including Dutchess County and parts Ulster and Orange counties, we have expanded criteria to permit face-to-face medical visits. This decision is based on data from local sources. Important daily metrics have fallen to rates that allow us to safely admit more patients to our office. These metrics include:
- Hospital admissions of those who test positive for Covid-19
- Confirmed cases of the virus
- Deaths due to the virus
Why In-person Treatments Are So Important
Covid-19 has set in motion a number of ripple effects, including social distancing and a wariness to enter public places. However, now is not the time to unnecessarily stay away from medical settings, such as a doctor’s office. Johns Hopkins noted this alarming trend and reported their Community Physician group saw a 20 to 30 percent decrease in patient attendance.
Dr. Lorraine Nardi, Internal Medicine physician at Premier, said she has seen a similar trend. “People are taking more time to go to the doctor with a symptom,” she said. Oftentimes, she explains, it is safer for people to go into an office and have an issue dealt with than for them to stay at home. Additionally, physicians are going to great lengths to make their offices safe places to visit.
Premier is committed to stopping the spread of Covid-19. When an appointment calls for face-to-face contact – such as an office consultation or an elective, invasive procedure or surgery – that patient is screened for Covid-19. Physicians then use these results to find the best course of action. Every patient is required to use a face mask in the office and Premier will provide masks when necessary. Premier is also making every effort to separate people with infectious concerns from other patients.
Physicians also benefit from increased in-person visits. Dr. Nardi is a nephrology specialist and an internist, which pertains to the screening of a variety of ailments. Part of this role, she explains, is making sure patients get routine treatments, many of which were delayed due to Covid-19. More visitations, means a greater opportunity to follow up on patient’s regular treatments.
Trust Us To Care for You
As we grapple with the effects of Covid-19, we understand so many people in our immediate communities are afraid. They’re afraid of leaving their homes, public places, contracting the virus and developing a severe illness. However, even in the midst of a pandemic, it is important not to succumb to treatable medical issues.
Don’t wait to seek help. Call today to schedule an appointment. Trust the expert team at Premier to provide excellent care in a safe environment.