The coronavirus family consists of several different viruses that commonly cause mild to moderate upper respiratory symptoms, however a few have been linked to severe respiratory disease (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, “MERS” & Severe acute respiratory syndrome, “SARS”). These viruses have been known to exist since their discovery in the mind 1960s.
A virus is a particle with a basic structure which consists of DNA or RNA that is contained within a protein coat. Scientists still debate if these viral particles are technically considered to be living or non-living; viruses do not have cells and cannot survive or reproduce by themselves. Viruses survive by tricking the host’s cells into allowing the virus to enter and replicate by hijacking the host’s organelles (which are the reproductive machinery within each cell).
According to the CDC, patients who have symptoms will usually have onset within 2-14 days after initial exposure and might include: fever, cough, shortness of breath, and fatigue however other mild symptoms may occur such as: loss of sense of smell/taste, runny nose, sore throat, body aches, diarrhea, and abdominal pain.
Troublesome symptoms that require ER care would be: feeling very tired, difficulty breathing, chest pain, blue discoloration of the lips or other body parts, changes in mood and behavior, or other similar concerning symptoms.
Follow the state health mandates which include practices like: coughing your mouth/nose when you cough or sneeze (use your elbow crease or a tissue), wear a mask when in public, wash your hands often, stay at least 6 feet away from others, wipe down your commonly used surfaces often with the appropriate cleaning materials.
According to studies the virus can live up to four hours on copper, up to 24 hours on cardboard and up to two to three days on plastic and stainless steel.
The CDC has a great discussion about this here:
Per the CDC’s recommendations about testing, updated March 24, 2020: “Clinicians should use their judgment to determine if a patient has signs and symptoms compatible with COVID-19 and whether the patient should be tested”. It is important to understand that there appears to be a high percentage of infected people who have very mild or no symptoms, so if you are concerned about a possible exposure or if you have a high risk job (where you interact closely with many individuals from the community on a daily basis) then your provider or facility might consider testing you. Some facilities have limited supplies and might only test individuals with certain known travel history, known exposure, or moderate/severe symptoms.
Turn around times have improved drastically. Results for the COVID 19 test can take anywhere from 3-4 days. The time frame is dependent on the lab and how many samples that they have to perform. Some samples from regions are processed faster because they are a region that has a high infection rate at this moment.
We will soon be offering rapid antibody covid testing!!
If you are notified that you interacted closely with an individual who’s tested positive (or suspected) then you should contact your PCP and follow their guidance which might include testing. If you have any suspicions about a possible infection then you should assume that you are infected - this means that you need to make sure that you are trying as hard as possible to follow all of the state health mandates.
All services that were available prior to this pandemic are still available now. These services include: CDL, Urine drug screens, wellness exams, chronic health maintenance visits, we still have ability to perform x-rays, laboratory services, pre-employment exams, return to work exams, and employer paid services.
We are striving to do everything in our power to keep everyone safe and protected. Patients will be roomed and kept away from other patients to ensure the least amount of exposure as possible. The clinic is cleaned between each appointment. Everyone in the clinic including you will be wearing a mask.
Rotine primary care is still being offered, call or make an appointment online. Please follow the same procedure for refill request of prescriptions and submit your request to the pharmacy. Contact the clinic with any additional questions.
- When you arrive at the clinic you will be instructed to call in, this is when the staff will instruct you whether your appointment will be in the clinic or from the comfort of your car. If you are symptomatic you can assume that you will have a full visit from your car.
- If your visit takes place in your car then our provider will come to you in full protective outerwear and provide you with care. If you come into the clinic you will be instructed to wear a mask and to use hand sanitizer when you come to the window or virtual receptionist.
- We have taken steps in the lobby including frequent disinfecting and limiting persons by taking them directly to the exam rooms.
- As soon as you enter we will get you to a room as soon as possible to decrease your exposure to others. You can finish the registration process in a confined room rather than performing this action in the lobby.
- Go to the website www.juneauurgentcare.com
- Click make an appointment and a select time slot, it will say you created an appointment
- Click the button for E-registration
- It will open and ask you for your personal information. Input all information available. If not available or you do not have then click the next button.
- It will ask for PIN once this has been completed. Call in for the prior to closing the tab or browser.
- After pin is provided it is complete.
Some of the risk factors that might make your infection more complicated include: age over 65, individuals with conditions like lung disease (asthma, COPD), poor immune system (Diabetes, HIV, Rheumatoid Arthritis, long term steroid use), liver/heart/kidney disease, and severe obesity (BMI>40).
Due to this unprecedented pandemic, we as a clinic have decided to waive copays for COVID related visits, so there will be NO UPFRONT COSTS. We are choosing to bill insurance companies, and many of whom are absorbing these expenses. Please contact your insurance for full details on the benefits.
Yes, you are allowed to come into the office to be seen if you are not experiencing any symptoms of any respiratory illness. The process is as listed above.
You are able to be tested again for confirmatory reasons here. You will still need an office visit. We are soon offering rapid antibody testing!!
Yes, you should finish the 14 day quarantine as it could take up to 5 days from exposure to show signs and symptoms but some people do not show signs and symptoms at all. Follow the CDC recommended guidelines for when to quarantine and when it is safe to break quarantine.
Yes during the pandemic the hours have been shortened. We will be open Monday through Friday from 9a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday we will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
We are currently working on a platform to offer telehealth to all patients. We hope to have this available soon.
The 2019-nCoV (novel coronavirus of 2019) is concerning because it is a new (novel) virus that our bodies have not seen before (so we do not have immunity) and it is spreading more rapidly than SARS/MERS with the potential to cause severe respiratory disease and death. You should care because, even though you might have little or no symptoms, there are many individuals in the community that might have a severe illness if they become infected. The importance of social distancing is to both prevent the total number of cases and to also allow the infection to spread at a lower rate as scientists work to determine the best treatments and create immunizations. Also, if everyone becomes sick at once the local hospitals will not have enough resources to treat everyone which could result in deaths that might have been prevented if the patients had access to resources.
COVID world tracker via Johns Hopkins:
Local Alaska live testing dashboard: