At Overlake EyeCare, we are closely monitoring an outbreak of a viral infection caused by a newly discovered coronavirus known as COVID-19. The outbreak was first recognized in December 2019 in Wuhan, China. While scientists are still learning about this virus, and the number of cases worldwide has grown substantially, the fundamental advice about COVID-19 and how to protect yourself has not changed:
– The steps to protect yourself from COVID-19 are generally the same as those for the flu:
– Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, or with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available
– Avoid close contact with sick people
– Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue or your elbow
– Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a household cleaning spray or wipe.- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) does not recommend that people who are well wear a face mask to protect themselves from respiratory illnesses, including the flu and COVID-19. Face masks should be used by people who show symptoms of these diseases to help prevent the spread of the disease to others.
– If you traveled to a country with at least a CDC Level 2 Travel Health Notice (currently China, South Korea, Iran, Italy and Japan) and you feel sick with fever, cough, or have difficulty breathing within 14 days after returning to the United States, or if you have these symptoms after close contact with someone who recently traveled to such a country, you should call ahead to your primary care physician and wear a face mask to your appointment to help prevent the spread of germs. At Overlake EyeCare, we do not have the ability to evaluate or diagnose COVID-19 or any other types of flu. If you believe you have been exposed to COVID-19 as described above, we recommend visiting your primary care physician immediately as Overlake EyeCare cannot treat these illnesses.
– If you have similar symptoms but have not traveled to an affected area or been in close contact with someone who has, you should visit your primary care physician who can evaluate you for a wide range of things, including the flu and other seasonal illnesses. If you experience these symptoms while visiting Overlake EyeCare, please advise the staff and we will provide you with a face mask.
However, if you develop life-threatening conditions like severe shortness of breath, changes in mental status, severe dehydration, or other complications, don’t hesitate to dial 911.