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Tue Sep 14, 2021, 10:41 PM

To anyone who may be wrestling with going to medical appointments vs. not going.

This is not medical advice, but rather, I am relaying what was advised to me today by my shrink during our video visit.

I see many different specialists routinely, and therefore, require many visits to the lab for blood work.

I recently looked at my schedule and saw that I have 5 different appointments coming up within the next two months. Covid cases are rising in my area, and frankly, I do not feel safe seeing any doctor face-to-face, in spite of my vaccinated status (fully vaccinated in late March). I particularly do not feel safe going to a lab for blood work. No matter how well I try to time it, it is always packed with people who seem to take the bare minimum precautions when it comes to protecting themselves and others. Additionally, my wife is in a state of despair because one of her clients died of Covid two days ago, in spite of being vaccinated. Finally, as I have posted, my brother died of Covid earlier this year.

I have been losing sleep on whether I should postpone some or all of my upcoming appointments. I expressed my concerns and quoted some local stats to my shrink, and I will paraphrase what he told me:

"Like you, I have the same concerns because I have more than a few risk factors myself. Here is how I am making my decisions. If the visit is a periodic, routine exam, I am not going unless I sense that my health has changed. If the problem is new, sudden, and acute, then you need to go to the appointment while taking taking all of the necessary precautions. Your eyes for example. You have an upcoming appointment with a specialist because your vision is changing and you have a known problem that needs to be monitored. I would advise you to postpone the appointment if the problem has not recently worsened, but unfortunately, it has worsened, and this is your vision we are talking about. So personally, I would not miss that appointment. For the other appointments that you mentioned, I personally would postpone them because these issues have been relatively stable and you have not complained of or noticed any changes. Now, I'm telling you what I would personally do. You yourself have to weigh what you perceive the risks are of going vs. not going, but what I am conveying to you is how I make my own decisions. If you do indeed decide not to go to an appointment, make sure to put a reminder on your calendar to follow-up, say, in a month or so. At that point, you can look at the local case load, and revisit your decision at that time."

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Response to LuckyCharms (Original post)

Tue Sep 14, 2021, 10:48 PM

1. Ive been using a medical lab that comes to your house.

At first my doctor sent them. Now I call them myself instead of going to the local lab. So far Medicare has been paying them in full, just as they do the regular lab.

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Response to marybourg (Reply #1)

Tue Sep 14, 2021, 10:51 PM

3. I was looking on the net to try to find a mobile lab service...

but I don't think there are any around here!

Well, there probably are some, but I'm thinking I would not qualify medically for that service?

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Response to LuckyCharms (Reply #3)

Tue Sep 14, 2021, 10:55 PM

5. I'm not homebound. I sent a friend and she's not either.

Maybe ask your doctor if she orders tests whether she knows a home visit lab.The one I use doesn't advertise.

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Response to marybourg (Reply #5)

Tue Sep 14, 2021, 10:57 PM

7. I'll do that. Thanks, marybourg. n/t

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Response to LuckyCharms (Reply #3)

Tue Sep 14, 2021, 11:00 PM

8. We looked for a travelling phlebotomist to come to the house for my husband

We found one and paid her out of pocket. But she took the blood draw to the lab as part of the service. It wasn't exorbitant and well worth it. She even took our blood pressure readings for a small extra fee.

Good luck with your search!

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Response to eleny (Reply #8)

Tue Sep 14, 2021, 11:05 PM

9. If your husband needs help to get to a

doctor, he can be certified as housebound if on medicare.

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Response to marybourg (Reply #9)

Tue Sep 14, 2021, 11:08 PM

10. Thanks but we're fine on that front

But it's good to know!

We were just trying to avoid going to the lab where they're usually crowded.

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Response to LuckyCharms (Original post)

Tue Sep 14, 2021, 10:50 PM

2. thanks for sharing, good advice from your shrink

I think all of us are adjusting our schedules and weighing risk factors right now.

An additional factor for me is the stress of not knowing what I'll experience when I visit a business. Who wants to go to the trouble of scheduling an appointment and then backing out because the business doesn't make visitors feel safe and wanted? Everyone is stressed and tired of fighting stupid anti-vaxxers.

We need a country wide mandate ASAP. End the filibuster, stack the Supreme Court, bring the governors in line, and make that shit happen. It is the only way to peace and sanity in the new normal.

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Response to cadoman (Reply #2)

Tue Sep 14, 2021, 10:52 PM

4. Agree 100%. n/t

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Response to LuckyCharms (Original post)

Tue Sep 14, 2021, 10:56 PM

6. Lots of physicians are doing telehealth nowadays. If you can

get lab tests at home, many conditions can be monitored.

I canít remember the last time a physician did any real examination, other than eye exams. And I think some of those can be done with your phone camera nowadays. Quite amazing.

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Response to LuckyCharms (Original post)

Tue Sep 14, 2021, 11:15 PM

11. I went to my doctor today.

There werenít that many people there. Kind of surprised me. I had no problem distancing. I think a lot of people are laying low.

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Response to LuckyCharms (Original post)

Tue Sep 14, 2021, 11:18 PM

12. I went to my doctor for my physical and flu vaccine and have my eye appointment tomorrow

It was the first time seeing my doctor since November 2019.

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Response to LuckyCharms (Original post)

Tue Sep 14, 2021, 11:29 PM

13. I gave direct care to COVID patients for months with no vaccine

Fear is real.

If you must go to public places where you feel you may be endangered, wear an N95 and look up instructions/video whatever on performing a self seal check. Wear a face shield or other eye protection (but I suggest the face shield). Keep hand sanitizer hooked to your waistband or belt and use it every time you touch surfaces used by others. Do these things and your chances of becoming infected are almost nil.

I don't know where you are, but where I am, a month from now things will be worse. Much worse.


Stay well!

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