COVID-19 FAQ

Our office is periodically adjusting its operational hours as the COVID-19 pandemic progresses to adapt to the changing policy and best meet the healthcare needs of our community.  Please refer to the https://www.nlfhc.com/about-nlfhc page for the most recent office hours.  We are also temporarily offering Telehealth visits for some appointments.  Please ask our staff about a Telehealth visit.

 

What is NLFHC doing to limit possible exposure for our patients during the COVID-19 pandemic? 

  • We ask all patients who are being seen in the clinic to check-in for their appointment by calling our office from their car once they are in our parking lot.
  • We will have an assistant contact the patient when they are ready to be seen, and they will be taken directly to an exam room.
  • We are offering the option to all patients to call us from the parking lot to check-in for their scheduled appointments.

Learn more about COVID-19 at the following links 

What should I do if I suspect COVID-19 or Flu illness?

  • If you or a loved one are experiencing life-threating symptoms, please call  911.
  • Please contact our office during regular business hours at 319-626-6006 if you have a cold or flu symptoms, and we will direct you regarding the next appropriate steps which may include one or more of the following:
    • A Telehealth visit 
    • A Clinic visit 
    • General instructions for home care 
  • After hours, please contact the doctor on call via Mercy Hospital at Phone number 319-339-0300

When can the Telehealth solution be used?

  • There is ample evidence that in-person medical examinations provide the best medical outcomes.
  • In times of emergency (as in the COVID-19 situation) or when accessing the office is not possible due to traveling or physical impairment, a Telehealth evaluation may provide a sufficient level of temporary evaluation until the short term impediment subsides. 
  • Please be aware that an in-person evaluation may be required in addition to the telehealth evaluation.

How do I  use Telehealth?

 


Coping with Anxiety during the COVID-19/Coronavirus Pandemic: 

The outbreak of coronavirus may be stressful for many people. Fear and anxiety about an outbreak can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions in adults and children. Coping with stress will make you, the people you care about, and your community stronger. 

Stress can lead to numerous consequences including, but not limited to:

  • Fear and concern about your health and the health of others
  • Changes in sleep and/or eating patterns
  • Having trouble concentrating
  • Worsening of chronic health problems
  • Increased use of alcohol, tobacco, and/or other drugs

What are the effects of stress on our bodies?

Symptoms associated with stress often have a direct effect on our bodies. It is important to recognize that stress often manifests through physical symptoms. Stress that is not managed properly can often contribute to long term effects on our health. The Mayo Clinic does an excellent job of outlining common effects of stress on our bodies:

ON YOUR BODY ON YOUR MOOD ON YOUR BEHAVIOR
Headache Anxiety Overeating or undereating
Muscle Tension/Pain Restlessness Angry outbursts
Chest Pain Lack of motivation Drug or alcohol misuse
Fatigue Feeling overwhelmed Tobacco use
Stomach Upset Sadness/Depression Exercising less often

Reduce Stress 

    1. Accuracy: One of the most important things you can do to reduce stress in yourself and others is to ensure that the information you are receiving is accurate. When you receive and share accurate information about the COVID-19 pandemic - in particular - you can put yourself and others at ease. 
    2. Take Breaks: Make sure you are taking breaks from watching, reading, or listening to news stories. This includes social media. If you are scrolling through your social media and find any news to be upsetting, please confirm your facts with reliable resources to ease your anxiety.
    3. Make YOU a priority: When you feel overwhelmed, take a step back from what you are doing and take a deep breath, stretch, or meditate. Eat healthily and ensure you are exercising regularly. An adequate amount of sleep is essential to our well-being. Avoid alcohol and drugs during a time of stress. 
    4. Connect: Though we are practicing social distancing, technology allows us to remain connected to one another. Facetime or video chats are great for staying in touch with close friends and family. 
    5. Fresh Air: There is nothing better than some fresh air! Take a walk with those in your household. Avoid parks, benches, or public gatherings. Remember, we are still practicing social distancing. 

Parents: 

This is a stressful time for you. Many of you are working from home while taking care of your children. This can be frustrating, overwhelming, and exhausting. It is important to acknowledge your feelings. Follow some of the steps above to ease your stress and do your best. Children often react to how adults respond to stressful situations. Support your children during this stressful time and provide reassurance as this is crucial for them. They are also facing drastic changes in their lives.  

Dr. Phil is doing an excellent series - while staying in isolation - on coping with the COVID-19 Pandemic. I encourage you all to tune in to his episodes daily. 

Click here for this week's episodes!

Final Thoughts

These are unsettling times. We feel anxious and afraid. We worry about ourselves and those we love. Amidst all the uncertainties, it is not uncommon for us to become anxious or depressed. It is important, however, that we take care of our mental health. 

The North Liberty Family Health Centre is here for you. Please call us to schedule an appointment with your healthcare provider should your anxiety begin to interfere in your daily life. We are still seeing patients in-person. We would gladly set-up a telemedicine visit with you if your provider feels your health concerns can be managed appropriately through this channel of communication. Your health and safety are our priorities. 

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"Anybody who has ever struggled to plant his feet onto the floor in the morning knows that life can be hard; it can be stressful; it can be overwhelming. But each of those negative, less than optimal feelings immediately takes a back seat to the inspirational power of hope." 

  • Shawn L. Anderson

Resources: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Mayo Clinic

Additional Information:

Free meditation/mindfulness applications for your smartphone: