CMA issues guidelines on reopening California’s health care system

CMA issued guidelines and recommendations for reopening the health care system. The document was developed by a task force of practicing physicians from different parts of the state and different sizes...

As the COVID-19 pandemic spread throughout the world, California and the United States took steps to limit the transmission and impact of the virus by implementing shelter in place orders. While this has so far prevented any surges overwhelming our hospitals, it has also meant that many other parts of the health care system have been idled to preserve resources and capacity in the system and limit the opportunity for transmission or exposure of the virus.
Physician practices and health care facilities have seen massive drops in patient visits, caused by a combination of shelter in place orders and patient fear. This may lead to much more complex problems in the future, as patients miss routine screenings and preventative care. With proper safety precautions, a doctor’s office is one of the safest places for a patient to be. Reopening the health care system in a thoughtful and safe way is a necessary and important step for California to take.
Reopening California’s health care system will not happen all at once, and will not be the same in all parts of the state. Reopening should be in phases based on testing, treatment and data, and the regional capacity within local health care systems throughout the state

All physicians will be adhering to the guidelines from the CDC.

It is important for patients to visit their physicians in the next several months. This is especially so for those with chronic medical conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, those with immunosuppression or any condition requiring regular followup. Call your physician for an appointment.  In many cases, medical practices have adopted telehealth which sometimes can substitute for a visit. In some cases, you can obtain monitoring devices such as blood pressure devices, glucometers for diabetes, spirometers for COPD, and pulse oximeters to measure oxygen levels.   Your doctor may send you to a lab for blood work. In order to minimize clinic visits ask your doctor for a 90 day supply. Consider using a mail order pharmacy. Some insurance companies and HMOs offer zero copayments for pharmaceuticals if you use a designated pharmacy.

Hospitals are now allowed to perform elective surgeries as well.

CMA issues guidelines on reopening California’s health care system: