Hello patients and friends,
We wanted to give an update on our plans to start seeing more patients in our office.
For the past month, we have consulted with patients mainly through video chat or over the phone, with a few in office exceptions for urgent problems. It has been an interesting experience, to say the least!
ENT is a particularly difficult specialty for telemedicine, since so much of our encounter requires an actual examination of the ears, nose, and throat. There is really no way to look into someone’s ears or nose during a video conference, and a blurred video of someone’s mouth and throat is challenging at best. Although we still encourage a video or telephone consultation for many of our patient encounters, we realize an in-office visit with exam is necessary for some, especially those with an acute problem.
Given the easy transmissibility of COVID-19, we will see more patients in the office next week, with the following heightened safety measures in place:
- All patients must bring and wear a mask the entire time they are in the office. We have a very limited supply and will not provide masks. Cloth or other home-made masks are acceptable. Any patient who arrives without a mask will be turned away and rescheduled to a later appointment.
- Only the patient is allowed in the office. For children and adult patients who require a caretaker, one adult may accompany the patient. Every adult is required to have a mask.
- All patients will be screened prior to appointment for fever, cough, shortness of breath, cold/flu symptoms, loss of smell/taste, and body aches.
- Patients will have a minimal wait in our waiting room. We will do our best to bring you directly to the exam room.
- New patients should print and complete their intake paperwork ahead of time. If this is not possible, you must arrive at least 30 minutes before the appointment time to receive your paperwork, and complete the forms in your car. This is for the benefit of your health, and the health of our staff.
- Drs. McCool and Bhuta and staff will wear masks during all patient encounters.
- We are performing diligent hand washing and extra cleaning precautions.
- Telemedicine appointments will still be available for higher risk patients and for routine follow up issues (like test results, etc).
We hope all of you and your families are staying safe and healthy during these challenging times. Please call us with any questions at 205-414-1368
Drs. McCool & Bhuta