Last updated: April 9th, 2020
Dear Primecare Patients,
At Primecare of Coral Gables, we pride ourselves on always being a community partner and providing the best care for our patients. And right now, during the COVID-19 outbreak, we need your help to protect our ability to take care of the patients who truly need us. Please take a couple of minutes to read the following message and share with friends and family.
We are closely following the news and recommendations from the Florida Department of Health (FDH) and Center for Disease Control (CDC) as the cases in Miami continue to increase daily. We will do our best to update you and encourage you to check with the FDH and CDC on a regular basis for updates.
Many of you have already been contacted by our office to have an appointment rescheduled, as we are trying to reduce in-office visits in keeping with federal and local recommendations. As an alternative, we are offering telehealth visits, which can be arranged by calling our office.
What we are doing to keep all patients safe
We take this situation very seriously and have been preparing for potential cases for weeks. For us that means reinforcing our protocols, using appropriate supplies and devising rapid-response contingency plans.
Our staff are trained on the appropriate care for patients with flu-like symptoms and are wearing masks and using protective equipment. We are following the CDC and DOH guidelines to limit the spread of the virus including how we isolate patients with symptoms and how we disinfect rooms between patients. All patients will be screened for symptoms immediately upon entering the building.
What you should do to protect yourself:
The best way to prevent illness from COVID-19 is to avoid being exposed to the virus and use good hand hygiene. Common sense precautions that prevent the spread of flu will also help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Please do the following:
- Stay home if you are sick.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Cover cough and sneeze.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
- If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) does not recommend that people who are well to wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19. Facemasks should only be worn by persons who are sick or persons caring for them.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and hard surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
- Recommendations on what to do if you think you were exposed can be found here: https://floridahealthcovid19.gov/exposure/
What you should do if you are experiencing symptoms?
Have symptoms? Try the CDC Coronavirus Self-Test Tool: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/symptoms-testing/index.html
For those patients who are experiencing fever, shortness of breath, persistent cough and body aches, please call our office (or 911 if it is an emergency). We are here to examine and evaluate you, if we feel that this is in yours and the community’s best interests. If we are able to rule out seasonal flu, we may recommend a coronavirus test based on the recommendations from the Florida Department of Health and Center for Disease Control. The latest recommendation on who should be tested can be found here. General recommendations for those with mild symptoms will include:
- Self-isolation at home
- Stay away from others by using a specific room and separate bathroom, if possible
- Clean your hands often
- Cover your coughs and sneezes
- Wear a facemask
- Click the following link for more recommendations from the CDC: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/downloads/sick-with-2019-nCoV-fact-sheet.pdf
Currently, there is neither a vaccine, nor any FDA-approved medicine designed specifically for COVID-19 (although there are clinical trials underway).
Please keep in mind anyone tested negative today could contract the illness tomorrow. Most patients who contract the disease will experience mild to moderate cold or flu-like symptoms and will recover fully by following the above advice.
Our office is staffed by some of the most dedicated teams in healthcare. We are coming to work every day committed to caring with kindness. We hope you will help us by not coming for a COVID-19/coronavirus test unless you meet the appropriate criteria or by calling ahead. By doing that, you will be helping ensure that Primecare continues to remain available to your friends, family and neighbors who need us now.
Thank you and stay safe,
The Staff of Primecare of Coral Gables
Recommended sources of information:
- Florida Department of health
- For any other questions related to COVID-19 in Florida, please contact the Department’s dedicated COVID-19 Call Center by calling 1-(866) 779-6121.
- The Call Center is available 24 hours a day.
- Inquiries may also be emailed to [email protected]
- Resource kit: https://floridahealthcovid19.gov/resources/#toolkitJump
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: