COVID-19 Information

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COVID-19 Call Center Hotline:
716.599.GPPC (4772)

We have launched a new call center exclusively for current patients of General Physician, PC. If you have any of the symptoms of COVID-19 (fever, cough, rash, vomiting, diarrhea, or respiratory problems) call our Hotline for help.
Please note: This call center is for current patients of General Physician, PC ONLY, or patients whose primary care doctor is unavailable.

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Video Visits Now Available

If you are practicing social distancing, or for any other reason can’t make it to the office for your next appointment, we now offer Video Visits. If you are a current General Physician, PC patient, you can remain in the comfort of your home and still receive an appointment. To participate, you will need to have a valid email address and a computer or device with a camera. Call your doctor’s office for more information.
To learn more about video visits, please Click HERE and watch our informational video.

 

 

Don't Let Fear Keep You From Taking Care of Your Health

 

A message from Dr. Paul Paterson, Orthopedic Hand & Upper Extremity Surgeon

 

Taking care of your heart during the COVID-19 crisis

 

Dr. Vijay Iyer, MD, Director of Cardiology, discusses the importance of taking care of your heart during this pandemic, and why it’s important not to ignore signs and symptoms.

 

Proudly honoring our Elderwood Partner

 

When the community needed us most, we were there to answer the call with the region’s first post-acute COVID-19 Unit at Elderwood at Amherst. With the support of our medical staff, our colleagues at Kaleida Health, and our entire organization, the team at Elderwood at Amherst responded with skill, compassion, and bravery. We thank those who are there in the trenches, providing care and compassion to these patients each day.

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

Our patients, and the community have questions about COVID-19, commonly known as the Coronavirus. Though information about this pandemic virus is rapidly changing, we want to offer some resources, as well as answers to the most common questions.

 

What is the Coronavirus?

From the Mayo Clinic: Coronaviruses are a family of viruses that can cause illnesses such as the common cold, severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS). In 2019, a new coronavirus was identified as the cause of a disease outbreak in China. The virus is now known as the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The disease it causes is called coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Symptoms include: 

  • Fever (100.4 or higher)
  • Cough
  • Rash
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Respiratory problems, including difficulty breathing

The severity of COVID-19 symptoms can range from very mild to severe. People who are older or have existing medical conditions, such as heart disease, may be at higher risk of serious illness. This is similar to what is seen with other respiratory illnesses, such as influenza.

 

Doesn’t it only affect older people?

While it is true, the majority of deaths have occurred in people over the age of 70, the danger with this type of virus is that young, healthy people can carry it, and pass it on to older people, or people with compromised immune systems, making it very dangerous for everyone.

As of March 20, more than half of all people who have tested psotive in New York State are under the age of 49.

 

How will I know if I have contracted it?

COVID-19 can only be confirmed through testing. If you are concerned you may have symptoms or have been in contact with someone who has tested positive, CALL your doctor for medical assistance. DO NOT go to your doctor's office or hospital. The risk of spreading the infection is too great. Your doctor can discuss your symptoms over the phone and offer you the best way to proceed.  

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It is safe to be in crowds? 

At this time, it is not safe to be in crowds. Because of the rapid spread of COVID-19 in recent days, people should all practice social distancing - ideally avoiding close contact with anyone outside of your home.

New York State has closed schools and most businesses (excluding essential businesses like healthcare) and mandated 100 percent work from home for all non-essential employees. Many other states have enacted similar restrictions. That is because this is a virus spread through close contact with those who are infected. As much as people may want to ignore these rules, the more strictly we practice social distancing, the faster experts believe we will contain this virus, and we can return to normal.

From the CDC:
Guidelines on staying safe in public places
Guidelines for Social Distancing

 

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Does washing your hands really matter? 

From Sanford Health: “Coronavirus is spread by droplets. So anytime we talk or sneeze or cough, there’s droplets that come from our mouth,” Dr. Allison Suttle said. “The virus is on those and it can land on surfaces. I touch the surface and then I touch my face — my eyes, my nose, my mouth — and that’s how I get infected with the coronavirus. That’s where hand-washing becomes so important. Alcohol wipes, hand sanitizer, just soap and water will get rid of the virus. That is all it takes.”

 

Visiting Our Offices:

If you believe you may have any of the symptoms consistent with COVID-19, including fever, cough, rash, vomiting, diarrhea, or respiratory symptoms, including difficulty breathing, please DO NOT come to any doctor's office, hospital, or Emergency Room. Instead, please call your primary care doctor, and they will discuss your symptoms over the phone and advise you on how to proceed. Thank you for your cooperation.

When you do visit our offices, we have enhanced safey measure in place to keep both our patients and staff safe.

  • You will be required to have your temperature taken and answer a few basic questions before you enter. This ensures that no one with a fever is allowed inside.
  • We screen every person to make sure you are safe; including our staff and providers.
  • Everyone entering our office is required to wear a mask – if you don’t have one we will provide one.
  • Only patients with an appointment are allowed to enter the office. No family or friends will be allowed in unless the person is assisting a patient as their caregiver.
  • No unauthorized personnel are allowed in our offices. (This means vendors, sales personnel or delivery people).
  • Our patient rooms are cleaned before and after each patient.
  • Our offices are deep cleaned daily.
  • Our staff are equipped with all the proper personal protective equipment.
  • Our offices have been re-arranged to ensure social distancing.
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What if I can't come to the office for my appointment?

If you are practicing social distancing, or for any other reason can't make it to the office for your next appointment, we now offer Video Visits.

Rather than coming to your primary care doctor’s office, if you are a current General Physician, PC  patient, you can remain in the comfort of your home and still receive a consultation/appointment with your provider.

To participate, you will need to have a valid email address and a computer or device with a camera (mobile phone, iPad,

tablet, etc). Simply call your primary care office and we can get you scheduled. Many of the insurance companies are covering Video Visits like they would regular in-office appointments.
 
Please Note:
Video Visits may not be appropriate in every situation. To see if it is a good option for you, please call our office and speak to a patient services representative.
 
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Won’t this just die out when the weather gets warm? 

The truth is, no one really knows. While it is true, some viruses do decline when warm weather arrives, that may not be the case with COVID-19. People should take all necessary precautions to stay safe and not assume warm weather will mean the end to the pandemic.

On March 21, Governor Cuomo predicted at the curent rate, between 40-80 percent of New York residents would become infected with COVID-19. Click here to watch that press conference. It isn't safe to wait for warm weather to help, everyone MUST practice social distancing now in order to lower that number.

 

Can the spread be slowed down?

15 Days Can — Slow the Spread

Initial directives were for older people (65+) and those with compromised immune systems or underlying illnesses to self-qurrantine for 15 days. As the virus has continued to spread, the World Health Organization, CDC, and the federal government are all now reccomending EVERYONE self-quarrantine for as long as possible, or until there are further directives. Non-essential workers are encouraged to work from home, and everyone should avoid close contact with people outside of your home.

For more information visit coronavirus.gov

 

 A Touching Testimonial

Angela, a patient at our Lancaster Medical Primary Care office, shared this wonderful testimonial to the care she has received as she battles COVID-19.

I just wanted to reach out to express my sincere gratitude and thanks to your GPPC nurses who have contacted me daily, along with my primary care physicians, as I deal with COVID-19.

As my sickness evolved, I was never sure from one day (or hour) to the next how I was going to feel.  Nurses Lisa, Judy and Katie talked me through and answered so many of my questions.  Not only the way I was feeling physically, but mentally!

I think the mental component is so important right now … fear of the unknown!  Was I really getting better?  All the nurses truly seemed to care, and I seemed to bond with them rather than bother them.

So many of my friends who are dealing with the same issues are amazed that I am getting a daily call. Some don’t even have primary physicians.

Again, thank you for sending out that lifeline, making my recuperation much easier and knowing that I am not alone in this crazy time.

Sincerely,

Angela W.

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