Dear Comprehensive GI Care patients and family,
We are closely following the developments of the COVID-19 pandemic and want to let you know that we are taking clear steps to make sure you can get the care you need while keeping our patients and staff safe.
We are taking this threat seriously and encourage all to do the same. People infected with COVID-19 can be asymptomatic but spread it to those at risk (over 60 years old, multiple health issues, weakened immune systems). Thus, we believe that everyone should limit exposure to others (social distancing), perform good handwashing hygiene, and minimize gatherings. Here are some resources:
We are not testing for COVID-19 at our facility. If you feel that you may have symptoms of the virus or have been exposed to COVID-19, please contact your primary care physician or urgent care. FOR MILD SYMPTOMS, PLEASE DO NOT GO TO THE ER OR PUBLIC HEALTH DEPARTMENT AS THEY NEED RESOURCES FOR VERY SICK PATIENTS. Please refer to the CDC website and your local public health agency for updates as news for this is rapidly evolving.
As for our office visits and procedures, we are postponing non-urgent appointments and procedures for at least the next two weeks (through March 31, 2020). We are calling our patients to place them on a list so we can contact them later to reschedule. New non-urgent patients can mail in their paperwork or fill out our questionnaire via the portal online. We will likely not schedule routine new patient office appointments for at least the next 4-6 weeks. (End of April/start of May 2020).
By next Wednesday, March 25, 2020, we will be starting Telemedicine to be able to take care of patients remotely. Instructions for setting this up will be up on our website in the next few days. Telemedicine services will be considered an office visit and will be billed per insurance guidelines. Because of the high volume of calls we are receiving, we are not able to give routine results. Discussion of results will be through a Telemedicine or phone visit. If you need an urgent refill of medications, please let us know.
We are seeing select patients in the office who Dr. Hertz or Dr. Trivedi deem have an urgent need to be seen. In line with guidance from the CDC and major GI societies, we are only performing urgent procedures at this time at the hospital and our surgery centers; non-urgent procedures will be deferred most likely for at least 4-6 weeks. If you have any questions, please call us. The calls may go to voicemail, but we will get back to everyone.
For after-hours calls, we ask that you call only for emergency issues. For questions that are routine in nature (medication refills, results, mild symptoms, off work notes etc), please contact us during business hours or use our patient portal for communication. Because of the volume of calls we are receiving, non-urgent messages left with the physicians after hours, will not be returned. We hope you understand the need for this triage.
We wish you health and safety during these trying times. We are here for you.
Dr. Hertz, Dr. Trivedi and the CGI care staff