New Letter from Your DOHC Coronavirus Task Force

April 14, 2020

CORONAVIRUS INFORMATION FOR YOU AND YOUR FAMILY

Dear Valued Desert Oasis Healthcare Member:

We are encouraged by the actions you and your families are taking to stay home and stay safe. Since our last message to you, the country has continued to experience the unprecedented impact of the Coronavirus: through personal loss, daily tallies of those who are positive or who have died, shortages of home or medical supplies, restrictions on our ability to move freely, and the question “what does an end to this look like?” This has not been easy, but together we are making progress.

We continue work around the clock to maintain your healthcare teams’ availability. Here are a quick list of what DOHC is doing to accomplish this:

  • Teams of staff are calling patients every day to check in, to make sure you have your medications, that your health is stable, and if you have experienced any symptoms of Coronavirus – that we stay in touch while you self-isolate or to help direct you to an increased level of care if needed. Thousands of calls are made weekly.
  • If you call with Coronavirus or symptoms (24/7), your call will be answered by either an RN or provider to answer your questions, screened and guided on a self-treatment plan at home, or advised on action steps if your symptoms are acute and require intervention.
  • Beginning the week of April 6th, DOHC now offers telehealth visits either through a virtual video visit or by telephone. You can use your phone, a computer or laptop with video and microphone, or the help of a family member who lives in your household with the right device. We have taken many steps to prioritize easy access to your healthcare team without having to leave the safety of your home. These virtual visits are private because we are sending secure texts and using secure video technology.
  • The majority of DOHC staff now work from home, to include in most cases your providers and health care team. Following federal guidance, everyone (patients and staff) is screened before entering any DOHC site every day.
  • All patients who are determined to need to be tested are directed to an outside tented area on the Palm Springs campus. This allows for just one dedicated team to be equipped with personal protective equipment (PPE) and minimize exposure risk to the fewest people. Like the entire Coachella Valley and nationally, ONLY THOSE EXHIBITING SYMPTOMS are being tested.
  • All critical health-monitoring programs are now converted to virtual or phone visits: diabetic care, COPD, cardiology, nutrition and health education, behavioral health, other specialty, etc.
  • All patients needing to go for labs at LabCorps in Palm Springs campus, wait in their cars and are screened and then called only when the LabCorps team is ready for their visit. This greatly reduces risk and prevents waiting in groups.
  • In line with Riverside County requirements, all staff wear masks in public. We ask that in the event you do come to one of our service sites that you and anyone accompanying you to wear a mask. In the case you visit without one a mask will be provided before you are screened and approved to enter a building.
  • Our dedicated PHARxM team are working with higher risk patients to ensure they have medications, using technology to monitor symptoms or changes, and maintain contact to answer your questions by virtual or phone visits.
  • Desert Oasis Healthcare pledges to make sure that the information on our website is current on what’s happening and what additional information you might need to stay well.
  • DOHC has doubled its financial commitment to the Find Foodbank to ensure that DOHC members who do not have the resources for nutritious food are linked to community resources up to and including delivering food to those who qualify. For this reason, we have asked all of our staff to ask every patient if they have food or have a way to get food.

As of this week we have had over 334 people diagnosed with coronavirus in the desert cities. Most of them are being cared for at home under home isolation. Home isolation means they are staying at home, and away from other family members while they monitor their symptoms. They will stay at home, protecting other people from getting the virus, for a minimum of 14 days. You start counting those 14 days when your symptoms stop happening.

You can be a community hero, just by staying home!

Person to person contact, also called community spread, is now the main way that exposure continues to happen. We need you to continue to follow our Governor’s orders to stay at home except for absolutely needed trips out, for groceries or medicines. This is also called “shelter in place”. We encourage you to practice good social distancing, which means staying at least 6 feet away from anyone who doesn’t live in your home with you, when you do have to go out of the house. Additionally WEAR A MASK. For social distancing to work, you should not have friends or family over to your home right now. Each person you come in contact with who then goes out into the community makes for many points of possible contamination. Staying at home, staying 6 feet away from other people while out, wearing a mask and avoiding community social events will help us all contain the number of people who might come down with this virus.

To reach us if you need anything for your health during this crisis including such things as medicine or food: Call us first for instructions (760) 969-6555 or call your PCP.

Should you have any questions, please contact DOHC or visit our website for information at MyDOHC.com.

Sincerely - Your Desert Oasis Healthcare Corona Virus Task Force

To read the previous letter on March 25, please go here.

To read the previous letter on March 10, please go here.

Additional trusted resources:

www.MyDOHC.com

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/OPA/Pages/NR20-011.aspx

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Symptoms?

CALL FIRST: (760) 969-6555
All DOHC members will be asked several questions, advised on how to monitor at home, or given specific directions on where to seek medical care if needed. If you have a hearing or speech impairment, please use our (TTY/TDD) line at 711.

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