Novel coronavirus (nCov) or as recently renamed COVID-19, is part of a large family of viruses that can cause respiratory illnesses ranging from common colds to more severe diseases like pneumonia. To date, there is still no specific way to prevent or treat the virus, urging the World Health Organization (WHO) to accelerate R&D efforts to contain the spread.
The US was among the first few countries that reported suspected cases of the COVID-19 infection. Since the first confirmed case in the US, the International Health Regulations Emergency Committee of the WHO has declared the outbreak a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC). A public health emergency (PHE) was declared to aid the nation’s healthcare community in responding to COVID-19.
Here’s a summary of the COVID-19 cases in the US as of March 3, 2020:
Update: As of March 27, 2020, there are 86,548 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the United States. 1,321 have died and 1,889 have recovered.
These numbers may seem alarming especially in the context of this blog, but the reality is that other non-novel viruses such as influenza have been taking a thousand times more lives in the US. In the 2017–2018 flu season, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates flu-related deaths at around 61,000 in the US alone. In the same season some 49 million Americans fell sick with influenza. Even other diseases that are not virus-related kill more people on a daily basis—almost 50,000 people die of cardiovascular diseases per day, globally.
Knowing these figures can help us overcome our fear and anxiety, which stem from our lack of understanding of COVID-19. More importantly, expanding your perspective on the impact of the virus helps you deal with the potential influx of panicking and anxious patients. So as the outbreak remains a novel health concern, it could increase the demand for unique clinical services from your practice.
While efforts have been made to avoid the spread of the virus, such as imposing guidelines and safety standards to healthcare facilities, handling the dynamic measures from CDC may require continuous monitoring that could also affect your workflow. On the patient’s end, the need to verify their condition remains a top priority. Aside from educating patients about the virus, quickly screening, documenting, and responding to their concerns can help your patients maintain their peace of mind.
To help you quickly ascertain a patient’s potential infectious status and take the appropriate steps to the necessary treatment, we've built our new Coronavirus visit note diagnosis template in IMS. This packet includes:
Fear of the Coronavirus has swept the globe even faster than the virus itself, but your patient's concerns are still justified, as with any infectious disease outbreak. With the right knowledge and tools, you and your staff can be more efficient in dealing with patients who come to you for answers.
Interested in the Coronavirus Template?
A member of our Implementation team will be in touch!