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Consumer Reports: Don't put off medical care during COVID

Posted at 5:48 AM, Aug 10, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-10 09:52:43-04

TUCSON, Ariz. - Almost half of Americans said they or a family member skipped or put off medical care because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“People should not ignore serious symptoms. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, including signs of a heart attack or a stroke, call 911, or go to the ER immediately," says Kevin Loria, Consumer Reports Health Editor.

If you’re unsure if you should go in for a screening test, office visit, checkup or procedure, give your doctor’s office a call.

“They can let you know whether if you should come in or not. The same applies with contacting your kids’ pediatrician office about keeping up with vaccines," says Loria.

Going to the doctor will likely look and feel different. Beforehand, you may also be screened for COVID-19 symptoms by phone or email, and your temperature might be checked before stepping in the door. When you do arrive at the doctor’s office, you may be asked to come alone and wait in the parking lot instead of the waiting room.

“You should also take the same precautions when going to your doctor’s office as you would going elsewhere else in public, so wear a mask, try to stay at least 6-foot away from other people, don’t touch your face, and washing your hands or using hand sanitizer after touching anything," says Loria.

You can also expect a lot of the same changes at your dentist’s office, and those who need crowns replaced, fillings, and bridges might take priority over those who are due for a cleaning. So, if you have to delay that cleaning, remember to brush and floss regularly.