If you haven't seen your doctor during the current health crisis, it's time to make an appointment. The last thing you want to do is postpone your medical care. Many doctors stopped taking routine appointments during the shutdown. But, most of them have started seeing patients again. If you're concerned about safety, you need to know that doctors are taking steps to protect you. One of those steps include sanitizing the office throughout the day. They're also requiring staff to wear protective face coverings. But, there are also things you can do to ensure your health and safety. Here are four steps you need to take for your next doctor's visit.
Ask About Telemedicine Visits
If you're worried about exposure to COVID-19, ask about telemedicine. Telemedicine visits let you speak to your doctor without a doctors office visit. You can schedule either a phone visit or a face-to-face visit over the internet. Face-to-face visits let your doctor provide basic exams. These visits are useful for things like sore throats and rashes. Both types of telemedicine appointments let you see the doctor from the safety of your own home.
Choose the Right Appointment Time
If you don't want to spend much time in the waiting room, choose the right appointment time. When you call to make the appointment, ask about typical office lulls. Those are the times where there are fewer patients in the waiting room. Try to set your appointment during one of the office lulls. That way, you're less likely to come in contact with someone who's been exposed to COVID-19. You also help reduce the risk of office overcrowding.
Practice Safety Precautions
If you need to make a visit to your doctor's office, take the right safety precautions. The steps you take to ensure your own safety can protect those around you, as well. After all, you may be an asymptomatic carrier of COVID-19. One safety precaution you should take involves wearing a protective face covering. You should also wash your hands and apply hand sanitizer. It's also important that you practice good social distancing while in the doctor's office. One way to do that is to make sure there's at least one empty seat between you and the other patients.
Request Extra Prescriptions
Finally, if you take prescription medications, change the way you approach your prescriptions. First, ask your doctor to add an extra refill to your prescription. That way, you can wait longer between office visits. Second, use the drive-thru option for your prescription pickup. If your current pharmacy doesn't have a drive-thru, make a change. Ask your doctor to transfer your prescriptions to another pharmacy.