The COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic has had an increasing worldwide effect on people and businesses over the past few months. The following blog post should help to answer some of your questions and fears about visiting our clinic. It is imperative for us to let you know that we are taking all possible measures to make the clinic safe and infection free in order for all our patients to still receive the treatment they require.
What practices are we implementing to insure YOUR safety?
Firstly, as of the 20/03/20 our staff have completed the Australian Department of Health’s online learning module on infection control for COVID-19 to ensure the clinic is certified for best practices in the current time. This module is targeted at healthcare workers in order to educate about the virus, signs and symptoms, how to protect ourselves and our patients and busting any myths surrounding the disease. Secondly, we have recently transferred to a six-month supply of brand new full coverage face shields instead of our old headsheets to minimize patient contact with shared surfaces. This means that when lying on the plinth/bed your face and neck will only be in contact with a disposable material with no chance of touching the plinth to prevent transfer of germs. Whilst we have always taken pride in stringent cleaning procedures each and every day, we will be stepping this up a notch too! Extra cleaning of surfaces and doorknobs with antibacterial wipes will occur several times throughout the day between patients. There is also access to hand sanitizer in all of our clinician rooms, as well as at the front desk in reception, which we are encouraging all patients to use regularly.
Facts about COVID-19:
It is important that we stay well educated in order to keep on top of some of the panic and misinformation that is being spread in our society. We know that out of everyone who contracts the virus, 80% will experience very mild symptoms or in fact no symptoms at all requiring no special intervention; 15% will experience slightly more moderate symptoms with some medical attention needed. Only a small number of people (~5%) will experience severe symptoms require more critical care. A majority of these severe cases are in the age brackets above 70 years of age. The most susceptible population is the elderly and those who have a pre-existing medical condition e.g. heart conditions, diabetes, respiratory conditions, immuno-suppressed. Signs and symptoms of the virus include fever, coughing, sore throat, fatigue and shortness of breath. If you experience any of these symptoms, you should call your local GP for advice on the best course of action. There is also a Queensland Health contact number for those who think they may have been exposed to the virus via someone who has recently been overseas.
Key Prevention Strategies we can Implement Now:
- Frequent handwashing – when handwashing cannot occur it should be replaced by hand sanitizer, but it is important to remember that hand washing is more effective than the use of sanitizer
- Avoid touching your face – the virus is spread via droplet transmission meaning that the mouth, nose and eyes are key points of transmission
- Maintain social distancing – in all environments attempt to maintain 1.5m distance where possible
- Regular cleaning – of shared surfaces, door knobs and light switches will help to minimize the spread
As the progress of the virus has amped up worldwide, there have been a small proportion of people online and on social media who have been spreading “fake” news. This has included claims about the severity of COVID-19, ways to prevent it or even kill the virus, resulting in some people adopting strategies that are not at all evidence based. Below are some facts addressing some of the myths that have been circulating:
- Masks do not protect from the infection, they are only helpful to prevent the spread for those who are already infected. Non-infected people are actually preventing hospitals from adequate stock by unnecessarily buying masks.
- Climate/temperature has no effect on transmission – the disease is transmitted in all climates.
- Hot baths, hand dryers, alcohol and chlorine do not kill or prevent the virus
- The virus cannot be transmitted by mosquitos.
- Thermal scanners only detect fever, but cannot diagnose someone with the virus.
- At the moment, there are no known vaccines or solutions to cure/prevent COVID-19.
Please do not hesitate to contact us on 1800 HEADACHE if you have any concernsor queries about how our service will operate in the coming months!
See the video below for more information from our director clinician, Bertrand Doeuk, on the action we have taken!