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COVID-19: Coronavirus FAQs

The following is information on how BayCare Clinic is conducting patient care amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

What is BayCare Clinic doing to prevent the spread of COVID-19?

COVID-19 is an emerging and rapidly evolving situation. BayCare Clinic is actively monitoring recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Wisconsin Department of Health Services surrounding COVID-19. In response to these recommendations, BayCare Clinic has developed pathways to help triage and manage patients who may call the clinics or present to the clinics with symptoms of COVID-19. For your safety and the safety of others we may postpone your appointment or procedure if your visit is non-urgent.

 

BayCare Clinic has adopted universal masking of staff, patients and visitors within our facilities. This means everyone within our facilities will be asked to wear a mask at all times. To help conserve our supply of masks for our health care workers, we ask that if you have a mask you please wear it when entering our facilities. If you do not have a mask, you will be provided one when you arrive. We ask that you wear this mask at all times until you have exited the building, unless otherwise directed by a provider.

 

We welcome patients needing urgent and emergency care for any health condition.

If you need immediate care, come in. Don’t wait to receive urgent or emergency care.

 

We have two urgent care centers in Green Bay:

  • Aurora BayCare Health Center, 2253 W. Mason St. on Green Bay’s west side
  • Aurora BayCare Medical Center, 2845 Greenbrier Road on Green Bay’s east side

We staff emergency rooms in Green Bay, Two Rivers and Oshkosh:

  • Aurora BayCare Medical Center, 2845 Greenbrier Road, Green Bay
  • Aurora Medical Center in Manitowoc County, 5000 Memorial Drive, Two Rivers
  • Aurora Medical Center in Oshkosh, 855 N. Westhaven Drive, Oshkosh

BayCare Clinic offers telemedicine services, quickly and easily connecting patients with their providers.

Telemedicine visits can be a video chat or telephone visit. They are done in real time. These visits can be done from home, work or anywhere you can have a private conversation. You simply connect with your health care provider via desktop or laptop computer, tablet or smartphone (you do not need to have a smartphone to have a telephone visit). You’ll need a connected or built-in camera and microphone or land line or cell phone if you opt for a telephone visit.

 

During a video visit, you’ll see your provider, talk to him or her, discuss your health concern and hear their thoughts. In a video or telephone visit, patients and providers can ask questions of one other. At the end of the visit, you’ll receive a treatment plan from your provider. If necessary, prescriptions can be sent to the pharmacy of your choice and tests can be ordered to be performed at a nearby laboratory or facility.

 

All of our medical specialties continue to provide on-site care to patients who have needs that require a face-to-face visit. We have instituted several measures to help reduce the risks to you and to our staff.

  • Every patient scheduled for a visit is called the day prior to their visit to verify they are not displaying signs of COVID-19. If they are showing signs, we will help coordinate getting care in the most appropriate location with all necessary precautions.
  • Our clinics have reduced the number of patients being seen each day to assure that no patients are sitting in a communal waiting area or sitting in chairs that have not been wiped down between patient visits.
  • All of our clinics have put into place additional cleaning practices with disinfectants approved by the CDC.
  • Some of our clinics ask patients to phone the office when they arrive for their appointment. This allows those offices to provide a screening for COVID-19 symptoms while patients are in their automobiles and to immediately usher patients to an exam room as they enter the building.
  • If you are coming to the clinic, we ask that you either come alone or with one other person if you need assistance. We recognize this is a hardship, but we believe it is essential to help stop the spread of this virus. 
  • Everyone in our clinics – doctors, staff, patients and visitors – must wear a mask at all times. You can help preserve masks for health care workers’ use by wearing your own mask if possible. If you haven’t been able to get a cloth mask or other type of mask, we will provide one.
  • We are screening everyone who enters our clinics – staff and patients alike – for fever or respiratory symptoms so we can limit any potential spread of this virus.
  • Because we are working toward gradually increasing the number of patients we see each day, the extent of services offered varies by department.

Call us to determine the best way for you to receive non-emergency and non-urgent care.

When you call one of our medical specialties, our staff will listen to your concerns.

  • If a telemedicine visit is appropriate, we’ll schedule that.
  • If it’s best that you come in to be examined in person, we’ll schedule that.
  • If it’s appropriate to go ahead with a procedure, we’ll schedule that.

Visit BayCare Clinic with confidence

All BayCare Clinic locations have taken extensive measures to guard against any spread of the COVID-19 virus. These measures include use of personal protective equipment – masks and gloves – along with social distancing and the thorough and repeated cleaning and sanitizing of work and public areas.

 

If you visit a BayCare Clinic location, we ask that you wear a mask, have clean hands and practice social distancing.

 

We appreciate your continued understanding, patience and cooperation during this unprecedented world public health emergency. We’re in this together and we’ll get through it together.

 

What is COVID-19?

COVID-19 is a new coronavirus that has not been previously identified.  There are many common coronaviruses that circulate among humans and cause mild illnesses like the common cold.

 

What is the source of COVID-19?

It is suspected that an animal coronavirus originating in bats emerged, infected people, and is now being spread person to person. The outbreak originated in Wuhan, China, and has a link to seafood and live animal markets.

 

How is COVID-19 being spread?

Someone who is actively sick with COVID-19 can spread the illness to others. There also are areas of “community spread” where people have become infected and it is not known how or where they became infected. The current understanding is that COVID-19 is spread by droplets expelled when a person coughs or sneezes. These are then inhaled by another person. COVID-19 also can be spread by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching one’s own mouth, nose or eyes.

 

What are some ways I can protect myself and others?

  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Perform diligent hand hygiene especially after using the restroom, before eating and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Adopt “social distancing” practices. This means avoiding large crowds, not shaking hands with others, maintaining a distance of about 6 feet.

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

Current symptoms reported by patients with COVID-19 include fever, cough, sore throat, difficulty breathing, chills, muscle pain, headache and new loss of taste or smell. This illness can progress to a severe illness.

 

Who is at higher risk for serious illness from COVID-19?

Information shows that some people are at higher risk of getting seriously ill from COVID-19 including older adults and people who have chronic medical conditions like heart disease, diabetes and lung disease. The CDC advises that individuals who are high risk should take everyday precautions to keep space between themselves and others, keep away from others who are sick, wash hands, avoid crowds and avoid non-essential travel.  Those at high risk should strongly consider staying home as much as possible until the pandemic resolves in the United States.

 

Who should be tested for COVID-19?

Individuals should contact their primary health care professional if they have any symptoms of COVID-19. The health care professional will determine if testing for COVID-19 is indicated. Individuals can also contact their local public health department for guidance at the numbers provided below.

 

Brown County, WI920-448-6400

Door County, WI920-746-2234

Manitowoc County, WI920-683-4155

Marinette County, WI715-732-7670

Oconto County, WI920-832-5100

Outagamie County, WI920-832-5100

Winnebago County, WI920-232-3000

Calumet County, WI920-849-1432

Delta County, MI906-786-4111

Menominee County, MI906-863-4451

 

What is the cost for COVID-19 testing?

 

Can a person test negative and later test positive for COVID-19?

A negative result means that the virus that causes COVID-19 was not found in the person’s sample. In the early stages of infection, it is possible the virus will not be detected.

 

If the sample was collected while a person had symptoms, a negative result likely means that the COVID-19 virus is not causing their current illness.

 

When can individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19 be released from isolation?

Current CDC guidance on when an infected individual can be released from isolation includes meeting all of the following requirements:

  • For patients with symptoms undergoing repeat COVID-19 testing:
    • The patient has tested negative on at least 2 consecutive respiratory specimens collected at least 24 hours apart AND
    • The patient is free from fever without the use of fever reducing medications AND
    • The patient has improvement in respiratory symptoms (cough, shortness of breath)
  • For patients with symptoms not undergoing repeat COVID-19 testing:
    • The patient has been fever free for at least 72 hours without the use of fever reducing medications AND
    • The patient has improvement in respiratory symptoms (cough, shortness of breath) AND
    • At least 7 days have passed since symptoms first appeared
  • For patients without symptoms:
    • At least 7 days have passed since the date of the positive COVID-19 test AND
    • The patient has not developed any symptoms

How many people in Wisconsin have been diagnosed with COVID-19?

In Wisconsin there have been confirmed cases of COVID-19. As the number of cases is rapidly changing, please check the following webpage to see the most up to date information:

Wisconsin Department of Health Services: Outbreaks in Wisconsin

 

What countries are currently under travel advisories due to COVID-19?

At this time the CDC has issued a Level 3 travel alert for all international and cruise ship travel. To see the CDC’s most up to date information, check the following webpage:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): Coronavirus Travel Information

 

What are people who have traveled from areas with ongoing spread of COVID-19 being told to do?

To slow the spread of COVID-19, the CDC is working with state and local public health departments to implement after-travel health precautions. Depending on travel history, some individuals are being asked to stay home and avoid contact with others for 14 days from the time they left the area and to self-monitor for symptoms. If symptoms develop, individuals have been informed to call the provider’s office or emergency department before presenting for medical care so that appropriate precautions can be taken.

 

If I have close contact with someone who is under self-quarantine due to their travel or exposure history, what do I need to do?

The CDC defines close contact as being within approximately 6 feet of someone for a prolonged period of time. Close contact can occur while living with, caring for, or visiting someone.

 

If you have had close contact with an individual who has tested positive for COVID-19, your physician or your local health department can provide further direction.

 

What are some reputable sites where I can find more information?

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Home Page

 

Wisconsin Department of Health Services: COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Home Page

 

 

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All Rights Reserved.

BayCare Clinic, baycare.net, is the largest physician-owned specialty-care clinic in northeastern Wisconsin and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. It is based in Green Bay, Wisconsin. BayCare Clinic offers expertise in more than 20 specialties, with more than 100 physicians serving in 16 area communities. BayCare Clinic is a joint partner in Aurora BayCare Medical Center, a 167-bed, full-service hospital. Follow BayCare Clinic on Facebook and Twitter.