NOVEL CORONAVIRUS (COVID- 19) Everyday Preventive Actions with Dr. Vanessa Ocampo, MD

March 14, 2020

NOVEL CORONAVIRUS (COVID- 19) Everyday Preventive Actions with Dr. Vanessa Ocampo, MD

After seeing my neighbours and friends panicking yesterday - March 12,2020 about the rapid spread of the COVID-19 among the different countries and the lack of essential supplies at supermarkets, I decided to write some recommendations for them. These are based on information available at trusted medical sources.

You may suspect COVID-19 infection if you have been to a place where there is spread of the virus, or have been in contact with a possible case or confirmed COVID-19 case, and you present the MOST COMMON symptoms:

  • Cough (ANY kind of cough, not just dry)
  • Shortness of breath
  • High fevers
  • Isolated diarrhea (not very common), which comes BEFORE the fever and cough.

The risk of getting coronavirus in CANADA has been assessed as LOW TO MODERATE as per the Public health Agency of Canada (PHAC) but be aware that the situation is likely to change in the next few days.

Remember that the definition of CONTACT is being closer than 2 meters for 15 minutes, face to face contact, or living in the same house as someone who is infected.

Most people will have a mild illness and recover, but there is an increased risk of more severe infection for Canadians:

  • Age over 60
  • With compromised immune system
  • With underlying medical conditions such as diabetes, hypertension and chronic cardiac and lung disease.

If you are taking immunosuppressive treatments (as my rheumatology patients are), be advised that the available data so far does NOT identify this as a risk factor for higher risk of death, but IT IS A REASONABLE cause of concern. In this case PLEASE do not stop your treatment and talk to your doctor about it.

Protect yourself and your loved ones by:

By: Dr. Vanessa Ocampo MD, FRCPC. Internal Medicine & Rheumatology

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