What is all the fuss about? It is just a virus right? Wrong. No one really knows the extent of the damage the virus can have on our health. This unknown is what leads many of us to be worried, and this concern is not only appropriate, but is healthy. If it leads you to practicing social distancing as much as possible, and staying home unless you need to perform essential tasks, then we still have a chance to decrease our risk. We are behind the ball. This is well known. But so is the rest of the world. We could not prepare for such a virus but knew it was potentially possible (anything is). As a result, please don’t panic when you see daily numbers of the number of deaths in certain cities, counties, or countries. Just know that the risk is real and we have to do what we can to help. In a time where it seems like we are hopeless, we do have the power to stop the spread and hopefully limit future casualties.
But what if I am not feeling any symptoms?
This is where it can get scary. You can still be a carrier, which means you have the virus, but you don’t have symptoms. Is this supposed to scare you? Not necessarily. I just want you to know that the reason social distancing was implemented has to do with this fact.
Why are doctors’ offices closing down or limiting appointments?
This is to help ensure those who have symptoms that could be related to coronavirus can get in to see us, we want to keep them out of the hospital as much as possible if it’s safe to do so.
But there’s no cure, or treatment right?
Well more to follow on that. It is possible that by the time the virus runs its course, the medications will still be in production. Is all hope lost? No! Our social distancing, limiting handshakes, WASHING hands with soap and water can still help us. Sometimes, we have to go back to the basics.
Together as a county and city, we can get through this. We have amazing men and women throughout the city that are working to ensure you are as safe as possible. We are going through the same stress that you are going through and if you get a chance, thank them (but without a handshake please!)
Jacob Mathew, Jr. DO FACOI FACP CHSE FAWM
Faculty, Internal Medicine Residency, Parkview Medical Center