Dear Heritage Families,

We are sure you were as alarmed and disappointed as we were on Saturday to get the emergency alert about staying home due to the rising cases of COVID-19 in Bexar County.  This week is a reminder that we all must keep doing our part. 

What can you do?   It is so imperative that we wear masks when we are out.  A recent article from UT Southwestern Medical Center explains myths vs realities.  When all parties are wearing masks the incidence of transmission is extremely low.  We also need to practice social distancing.  Being outside is not social distancing.  Being outside at least 6 feet away is social distancing.  If staying 6 feet away is not possible, a mask should be worn.  

What is Heritage doing?  In light of what we have learned about COVID-19 in the past 4 months and in continuing with our current policies and procedures, Heritage will continue seeing your children in our office.  We have made many changes which are in place to make sure your visit is safe.   You can read about that here.  For the safety of you and our staff, we will be strictly enforcing mask wearing.  Masks must cover the mouth and nose the entire time you are in the office (not just when the nurse/assistant or doctor is in the room). 

If some of you still feel more comfortable with a telemedicine well visit, we are happy to do these as covered.  Insurance companies are learning and adapting just like we are, so coverage may vary for telemedicine going forward.  Call to find out more if you have questions.

As you begin to feel the pressure of the rising cases, please know we remain encouraged that children typically to do well with COVID-19.  They can still get sick and have more severe disease, but most will have mild to no symptoms.  The vast majority of those with moderate to severe symptoms will still fully recover.   We have not hospitalized any pediatric patients to date from our group.  We are also encouraged that surfaces are not the primary means of COVID-19 being transmitted.  However, this doesn’t mean it can’t be transmitted from surfaces so hand washing and wiping downs surfaces are still important.  Though children do not appear to be the primary transmitters of this virus, it is clear that teens and your college age children are transmitting the disease. We realize that socialization is important for so many physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual reasons.  We do need to continue to be creative in finding ways to have socialization.  We just need to do so cautiously and remember to protect the elderly and those who are more vulnerable. 

Heritage Pediatrics continues to operate normal business hours and to have 24 hour and 7 days a week physician after-hours coverage .  These are tough times.  We are all weary and done with this virus.  Yet, the past week has shown that the virus is not done with us.  Please keep your guard up, protect the elderly and vulnerable, be charitable with one another, and be creative to have safe social interaction.  This season will pass.  Let us come together as a community to do our part and weather this storm.  Please call us if you have questions.