Frequently asked questions (FAQs) about COVID-19 (Updated 3-26-20)
We at Sayana Medical & Wellness Center send you our best wishes during this challenging time. We wanted to share some information with you regarding COVID-19 and to answer some common questions. Please keep in mind this is an evolving situation as the world and the US continues to learn more.
Here are some answers to frequently asked questions. We will update them as needed.
1) What should I do if I have symptoms of a respiratory infection?
If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever and symptoms, such as a cough or difficulty breathing, stay at home and call us for a virtual visit and we can evaluate & treat you through video or over the phone.
You should also stay in a specific “sick room” if possible, and away from other people in your home and community. Use a separate bathroom, if available. Remember to wear a face mask if you are sick or caring for someone who is sick. (Do not hoard face masks)
Trouble breathing is a more serious symptom that means you should get medical attention. If you are having trouble breathing, seek medical attention, but call first. Call us or the emergency room before going in and tell them your symptoms. They will tell you what to do.
Call 911 if you have a medical emergency. Visit the CDC website to learn more.
2) What equipment should I have at home?
In terms of home equipment, it can be useful for all patients to have::
- a working digital thermometer
- a pulse oximeter (can be ordered on Amazon)
- a blood pressure cuff (also ordered on Amazon, I prefer Omron brand and one that is not battery dependent but anyone will do)
- a face mask to wear if you are sick or caring for someone who is sick. Do not hoard face masks. In a public health emergency like this, the lack of face masks makes it unsafe for trained health care professionals like myself to care for the sick.
3) When and where can i get a COVID- 19 test ?
First, use the CDC's online Coronavirus Self-Checker.
Second, the CDC leaves decisions about testing to the discretion of local public health departments. The LA County Department of Public Health (DPH) currently recommends that health care professionals test persons with symptoms compatible with COVID-19 where a diagnostic result will inform clinical management or public health response. At this time, this means there are two approaches for testing.
The first testing option is through the LA County DPH, which has specific testing criteria and is ramping up testing through drive-thru sites. You can request an appointment on the link below. https://lacovidprod.service-now.com/rrs
For patients not meeting LA County DPH criteria, the second option is through commercial clinical laboratories like Quest or LabCorp but are running low on supplies, we don't have any tests but some urgent cares still do.
By April 6th, we should be able to order a test which can be mailed to your home by a laboratory. This test measures antibodies to COVID-19, which can tell if you currently have an infection or have a history of being infected. The test can be done at home with a small finger prick of blood. The results should be back in 2-3 days. Please arrange a telemedicine visit with one of our providers to be evaluated for this test. The cost for the test is $149, which is the price the lab charges our practice for each test. We are not charging extra for this test.
4) Is the clinic open and offering services?
Yes, we are open and are still offering all services but with some important changes. New or existing patients should call the office first to set up a telemedicine video or phone call with one of our providers. These telemedicine or phone visits will be the main way we provide care over the next 3 months or more. We are now able to bill most insurance plans for telemedicine consults. We will collect the same copay as you have for your regular in-person visits and you will be responsible for any remaining amount if you have a deductible.
We are now also offering IV services, microcurrent, Acupuncture and Myofacial release services but please be aware of the following protocol when you have these appointments.
If you are feeling sick in any way, or are caring for someone who has fever or respiratory symptoms, please call us in advance and cancel your appointment. Cancellation fees for in-person appointments are on hold at this time.
Wash your hands thoroughly with warm water and soap before leaving your home.
Please arrive at least 5-10 minutes before your appointment time.
Before entering the clinic, first call us from your car to confirm that we are ready to see you. We will keep our waiting lobby empty to adhere to social distancing protocols.
Please wear a surgical mask before you come in. If you do not have one, please let us know when you call.
Please forgive our appearance as we will be wearing face masks and goggles to protect staff and patients.
After you have been checked out, you can not wait in the clinic for any reason. If you are waiting for a ride to pick you up, please wait outside.
We reserve the right to cancel appointments if patients do not follow this protocol.
5) Will my insurance cover telemedicine visits?
At this time, the following insurance plans will cover telemedicine visits with our providers. Contact your insurance plan to confirm. This list is subject to change as insurance plans update their policies.
Anthem Blue Cross
Blue Shield of California
6) Can I still buy supplements from your office?
Yes, you can and we have most things in stock. Please call the front desk to pay for them in advance and arrange a time for you to pick them up. When you arrive, call us from your car to let us know you're outside. We will have them ready at the front door for you to pick up.
We also offer the option to Fedex supplements. Patients will need to pay for the cost of shipping at the time of purchase.
7) Are you still drawing blood at the clinic?
Yes we will be resuming these services on April 7th. The protocol for in-person appointments (see above) still applies, so please review the protocol. When you arrive, call us and make sure our phlebotomist is ready for you before leaving your car.
8) Can I contact you to review my labs or discuss clinical questions between appointments? What about asking for refills?
In February, before COVID-19 was an issue in our community, we launched a program called Stay Connected. Stay Connected uses a secure, HIPAA compliant messaging app and is available for patients who want to communicate with our providers between appointments. We guarantee a response to clinical questions within 72 hours or less when patients message us through the Stay Connected program. The program is free for Medicare patients and is available as a paid monthly subscription for everyone else. Please call us to learn more.
You can still always call our refill line for any refills of non-controlled medications and can usually get 3-6 months refilled.
I hope that you find this information helpful. We are here for you and will provide you with future updates as more information becomes available. Meanwhile, please stay at home, wash your hands, and stay in touch with friends and family (virtually).
The Sayana Medical providers and staff.