COVID-19 (March 20, 2020)
Dear Lovenheim Pediatric Families,
As the reality of home schooling, social distancing, fear, and more family time than we ever imagined possible begins to set in this week, I wanted to touch base with everyone and make sure you are all doing okay. Lovenheim Pediatrics remains open, but this week has been sobering walking up and down our halls. I miss the pitter patter of the little feet, the slamming of the doors, the Moms screaming at the teens about why they wore their smelly socks that day, and in an odd way it feels weird not hearing the sound of screaming kids getting shots!
While we remain open, we have had to continue to temporarily change with the changing times. We continue to do well visits and completely understand that so many of you would like to reschedule. I wanted to take this time to especially urge those with younger children that, although COVID-19 is at the forefront of all our minds, there are so many other things out there and we shouldn’t let our guard down. It remains very important that we continue to vaccinate our children and screen them for issues. We have begun to space out our well visits to limit any interaction with other patients and have very strict policies about cleaning and disinfecting.
We have also moved the vast majority of our “sick” visits and consults to a telemedicine format (think Facetime for doctors). We have been using a nice telemedicine platform all week and, although it is not my preferred way to practice medicine, I think most who have used it have been happy to stay safe at home and still get great quality care and reassurance from us. Supply issues for Personal Protection Equipment continue to hinder our country’s ability to take this pandemic head on and we are no different. Our physicians and staff have shown tremendous courage in stepping up to do anything they are asked. Telemedicine has allowed us to keep them safe, their families healthy, and the office even cleaner for those precious little ones that can’t wait until this passes to come in.
I wanted to give you all a few reminders about COVID-19:
- Remember that hand washing and avoiding touching your face is the best way to keep you and your family healthy.
- Please always remember to keep your social distancing if possible. The stricter we are now, the sooner we won’t have to keep doing it.
- There have been some data coming out of Italy and France that Ibuprofen (Motrin and Advil) may not be as good of a choice for this than Tylenol (Acetaminophen). I am staying on top of this data as best I can but for the time being if your child has a fever, please use Tylenol first if you have it. It does not mean you cannot use Ibuprofen if needed.
- The confirmed cases of COVID-19 will go up quickly. This is expected and mainly due to increased testing. But it also means that we all need to take this seriously.
- N.J. is finally started to get testing centers up and running. I will make sure to post information as it becomes available. Right now, they are still only testing those with severe symptoms that, thankfully, most of us won’t have.
- Please don’t forget to talk to your kids and ask them if they have any questions. This sudden change in normalcy will affect them but letting them know that you are available to talk to them is a huge step in comforting them.
- Having a wife and two kids at home 24/7 now, I know it is not the time to preach about screen time. However, it is very important that we all get outside daily and get some fresh air. Breathe it in deeply and slowly and take a minute to relax. Also don’t forget that books still exist and now is a better time than ever to get your kids reading more.
I know the road out of our current situation will not be easy; it won’t be without bumps, but it will end. The highlights of my days have been my telemedicine visits when I get to see my patients smiling and waving at me. I miss all your smiling faces, I miss hearing about your school, and I miss hearing what fun things your families have been up to. You all are our family! We will get through this together. We are still here for you. Please don’t hesitate to set up your check-ups and to call if your child is sick or has any issues. If you or your children have questions or need to talk, we are here and willing to help. I hope to see you all soon.