The COVID-19 pandemic rages on and it is a prominent cause for concern for people who have some co morbidities or pre-existing conditions. The world has been in stasis for months, but things are slowly returning to normal, as hospitals are beginning to settle the appointment backlog and take new appointments in outpatient departments too. If you are visiting a hospital, there are some things to keep in mind.
Tips by Michael Giannulis for Safe Hospital Visit
Hospitals are Not Safe Yet
Telehealth has been an option for a while now, and it is encouraged that you exhaust that avenue before seeking in-person medical assistance. Further, while hospitals are sanitized more frequently and thoroughly than most other places, they are still a breeding ground for all kinds of germs and infections. You need to practice good hygiene yourself, keep all protocols in mind, and maintain social distancing. Wash your hands at regular intervals and use a sanitizer or disinfectant spray wherever possible. If you are accompanying someone in a high-risk group for COVID, like a child, or an elderly person, or a pregnant woman, ensure that they take all the precautions very seriously.
Save As Much Time as Possible
Call the hospital beforehand to get an appointment. It will reduce wait times, as well as, allow you to not crowd the reception or booking desk once you are there. If possible, pick the first slot after they open, as this is when it will likely be the least crowded as well as the cleanest, after the first round of sanitization. Michael Giannulis asks you to be punctual; delays by you will upset the entire chain of appointments and can cause serious harm, not to mention allowing a crowd to form and risk improper distancing.
Remember to Update Your Contact Information, Insurance, and Pharmacy Well in Advance
Remember to call well in advance to get your accounts or profile updated. Your medical insurance papers should be in order and kept organized. That should help in reducing processing time in the hospital. That should also minimize risks associated with exposure to infection. You do not have to hand back and forth the health insurance cards.
Plan Your Parking Well Ahead of the Appointment Schedule
Focus on researching your parking options well in advance so that you could avoid elevators that are not good enough for maintaining social distancing and have high-contact surfaces. Open lots and street parking are the best options under the circumstances.
Plan in Advance Your Route
Avoid entrances that are close to the ER. Try to use smaller and less crowded entrances and shorter queues. You may require some additional wait time because elevator capacity would be restricted to maintain social distancing. Ideally, you should try and ride in an elevator all alone to keep the infection at bay.
Conclusion: Exercise Necessary Caution
You should remember to carry your own gloves and sanitizers. Hospital screening may not always be reliable. It is best to use your own masks. Hospitals may provide you with masks, but you should exercise caution. See if the mask dispenser is badly designed and unsafe for you as that may prove to be risky and expose you to COVID-19 risks.