Here at Tacoma Elder Care we always want to make sure we are providing you with the latest and most current information. Which is why we want to keep you informed about the Coronavirus.
Keeping you and your loved ones protected is what we’re all about. To make sure you are protected in case of a crisis, we Highly Recommend you attend one of our Free Workshops to learn about the most important documents and information everyone needs. You can register for a Workshop HERE.
We also offer Free Consultations if you are unable to attend a Workshop. You can schedule a consultation HERE.
Note: At all Workshops we will provide face masks, hand sanitizers and wipes, to assure your safety.
Stay Informed About the Coronavirus
First, and foremost, it’s important to note that the Flu in general has been a major health concern for quite some time. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) at least 12,000 Americans will die from the flu in any given year. As many as 61,000 people died in the 2017-2018 flu season, and 45 million were infected. Therefore, there shouldn’t be any more concern or vigilance than any other flu season. The coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2), the cause of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), is merely a strain of the flu.
Like all flu viruses, the SARS-CoV-2 and similar coronaviruses, spread from person-to-person. Which means the viruses happen most frequently among close contacts (within about 6 feet). This type of transmission occurs via respiratory droplets. Transmission of SARS-CoV-2 to persons from surfaces contaminated with the virus has not been documented. However, current evidence suggests that SARS-CoV-2 may remain viable for hours, up to days, on surfaces made from a variety of materials. Cleaning of visibly dirty surfaces followed by disinfection is a best practice measure for prevention of COVID-19 and other viral respiratory illnesses.
The CDC recommends everyday preventive measures to help stop the spread of all respiratory diseases, including avoiding close contact with those who are sick; washing your hands frequently; avoiding touching your eyes, nose, and mouth; and encouraging employees to avoid the workplace if they feel sick.
Regence recently announced that they would cover the cost of COVID-19 testing for fully insured members to help reduce friction during this unsettling time. Which means fully insured members can access COVID-19 tests without copays, coinsurance, deductibles or pre-authorization if one is recommended by their provider. They are also working with their self-funded partners to implement similar cost share arrangements when directed, and with federal officials to ensure coordination of benefits for Medicare members and those with health savings accounts (HSAs).
What to do if you feel sick or experience symptoms
The CDC advises that if you have a fever, cough or difficulty breathing, call your doctor or urgent care center first rather than going in person. Most insurance programs offer access to virtual care portals. To find out if your insurance provider offers virtual care, call the information number on the back of your identification card. Virtual office visits are secure and confidential, allowing you instant messaging with doctors and nurses. These solutions enable quick and convenient access to virtual care while minimizing the spread of infection and easing pressure on providers’ offices and emergency rooms.
Additionally, refill policies for medications (excluding opioids) have been loosened by providing 90-day refills, to ensure people have their medications on hand. Regence announced that additional policies will be adjusted in the event of a drug shortage to ensure members have uninterrupted access to their medications without additional costs.
Recommended Precautions for Preventing Spread of COVID-19
Cleaning refers to the removal of dirt and impurities including germs from surfaces. Cleaning alone does not kill germs. Be sure to clean and disinfect to kill all germs on surfaces.
Stay at home if you have fever, respiratory symptoms, or believe you are sick.
Practice routine cleaning of frequently touched surfaces: including tables, doorknobs, light switches, handles, desks, toilets, faucets, sinks, etc.
Practice hand hygiene frequently: wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
In public places, use wipes to clean surfaces before using or touching.