We are reaching out to provide relevant information for you and your family with regards to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) global pandemic.
Anyone who has been in direct contact with a suspected or confirmed person or has symptoms (fever, cough, shortness of breath) in conjunction with recent travel to areas with extensive community spread of COVID-19 should be sent to a designated health department testing site. We do not recommend people in the general community who have NOT traveled to high risk areas or been in contact with suspected or confirmed cases be tested for COVID-19. We do NOT have the ability to test for COVID-19 at our office. Testing kits from the CDC and private companies are in exceedingly short supply, and our lab partners have placed all testing for COVID-19 in the DFW metroplex on hold indefinitely.
As a valued Diamond member, you have unique access to your physician directly and your doctor will determine the best triage plan of care for you and your family. Telemedicine will play a critical role in the delivery of care as the Coronavirus Outbreak escalates. The current rate of new infections indicates that the situation will escalate, so please stay calm.
What do I do if I think I have been exposed to Coronavirus?
Your Diamond Physician can perform telemedicine visits as a viable and safe alternative to providing care in the office setting. You will be directed to a public health laboratory at Parkland Hospital or a designated Dallas Health Department Facility. It will be your physician’s judgment to determine if you have signs and symptoms compatible with COVID-19 based on local epidemiology and clinical course of illness and whether or not you should be tested. Your physician’s decision is guided by factors including any persons who have had close contact with a laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 patient within the past 14 days of symptom onset or a history of travel to and from affected geographic areas within 14 days of symptom onset (China, Iran, Italy, Japan, South Korea).
Currently, there are 13 confirmed cases in Texas of COVID-19 as of March 10, 2020, and this is updated daily by the Department of Health at 10 AM.
Collin County – 1 (presumptive positive)
Fort Bend County – 6
Harris County – 6
The World Health Organization recommends to refrain from non-essential travel to China, Iran, Italy, Japan, and South Korea. Diamond Physicians recommends to refrain from ANY non-essential travel to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Be prepared but DO NOT panic.
As a reminder, there is no current vaccine or treatment for COVID-19, symptoms of coronavirus usually are self-limited and resolve on their own. The best advice is to reduce exposure risks by avoiding large gatherings and travel. The most important thing YOU can do to prevent COVID-19 infection is to WASH YOUR HANDS and limit the amount of times you touch your face. N95 viral protection masks are only for individuals who are sick and healthcare providers who are taking care of sick individuals. We will have a stock of N95 masks arriving next week reserved for Diamond members who may be exposed to coronavirus and need to protect those around them until testing is performed.
Basic overview for patients: https://www.bbc.com/news/health-51048366
Official CDC review and guide: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/index.html
Texas Health Department latest local updates: https://www.dshs.texas.gov/coronavirus/default.aspx#casecounts