Heritage Pediatrics COVID-19 FAQ’s Round 4

  •  Is Heritage Pediatrics offering testing for patients with suspected COVID?
  • Has Heritage Pediatrics had patients with COVID?
    • Heritage has diagnosed and managed dozens of patients and their close contacts for COVID-19.  
  • How is our city COVID burden looking?
    • As of late August 2020, all city wide parameters are improving at a steady rate.    With continued efforts to follow guidelines, we expect to be out of the moderate to high risk status by October.
  • Are you still offering telemedicine if we want to use it?
    • We continue to offer all visits by telemedicine and most visits in person.  Many visits with contagious potential are done in the parking lot.  Much more info can be found here.
  • Are telemedicine visits still covered by insurance?
    • As of August, most insurance carriers cover well visits and sick visits just as in person, with rare exception.   Most carriers have agreed to do so through the end of the year.   We expect them to continue to do so until our country reaches herd immunity.
  • Should I do a well visit now, or wait until the pandemic is over?
    • We encourage you to not wait to do a well visit if you are due.   We are still providing developmental, growth, behavioral, nutritional, social and emotional care and screening at every well visit.   Vaccinations continue via our outdoor clinic.  We have openings now, which will disappear when this is over.   We expect our wait lists to grow this summer and fall if restrictions are lifted. 
  • How are the doctors and staff doing?
    • To be honest, we are all tired.  This has been a long season for us.  We are so grateful for your outpouring of support and well wishes (and the cookies 😊).  We have worked diligently to be ready for the fall and all that it will bring.  We thank you for your continued patience as things are somewhat different when you visit compared to how they typically are.
  • Should I send my kid to school this fall in person?
    • This all depends on your risk level and comfort level.  If you are often around elderly and immunocompromised, online school may be best.  However, if you have minimal high-risk contacts or your child has strong emotional or developmental needs, face-to-face school may be the right choice for your situation.   Both choices have their risks and benefits.   Consider your individual circumstance and which parts are adjustable.   We are always here to consult if you need to talk it through.  You may find our previous post reviewing competing principles helpful to your process.
  • What if my child gets fever or has other symptoms that may be COVID-19?
    • Review the symptoms and then call us!  We have all the tools necessary to help you determine what to do next.  
  • How do I choose a mask for my child?
    • Best masking practices may be found here.  The critical point remains:  the best mask is the one your child is willing to consistently wear!
  • What is currently known about severity of COVID in children with asthma?
    • While we typically see higher rates of complications for all disease in patients with asthma, there has been very encouraging early data on coronavirus.   Children with asthma do have higher rates of complications but they typically do very well with coronavirus.  Make sure you have your rescue inhaler available if your child needs it.
  • Do I use Tylenol or Ibuprofen if I need it?
    • We recommend using either acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil) for discomfort from fever.    As always, do not use it to bring the number down.  Use it to treat a child expressing discomfort.   Fever is beneficial and should only be treated if a child is significantly uncomfortable.
  • Are flu vaccines recommended this year?
    • As you may have heard, flu vaccines are still critical in this pandemic for many reasons.   Up to 45% of COVID cases have been found in children with a second virus, which can complicate their course.    Influenza, to date, is still the more lethal disease in children.   Lastly, avoiding influenza this year will spare you child from being out of school for up to 10 extra days (and you from work) and/or a COVID scare and workup.  We are currently scheduling for flu vaccines for your child and family now, just call!