As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, you may be thinking about whether you're ready to go back to your local restaurant or engage in social activities. Now is also the time to focus on your health and reschedule medical care you may have postponed or cancelled.
One concern medical professionals have had amidst the COVID-19 pandemic is that people may be skipping important medical care – and that can cause health issues, especially if you already have a chronic condition.
Here are some types of medical care to consider:
- Preventative appointments – Routine preventative exams are one of the best ways to keep you healthy. They allow you and your doctor to pick up on medical issues early, before they become more serious, and to monitor the status of ongoing conditions.
- Follow-up care – If you had a doctor's appointment, screening or procedure before the pandemic began and were supposed to return for a follow-up visit, don't delay any longer. Just like preventative appointments, follow-up care is critical in keeping you healthier and detecting worsening health issues as early as possible.
- Elective procedures – If the pandemic threw a wrench into your plans for a non-emergency procedure or surgery, it's a good time to reschedule it. The longer you wait, the more serious any underlying condition may get that caused you to plan to have the procedure in the first place.
- Screenings – People need health screenings at varying intervals, depending on factors such as age, gender, health status and family history. If it's time for you to have a screening, like a mammogram, colonoscopy or prostate exam, don't delay. If your doctor has been monitoring your blood pressure, blood glucose or other health indicators, it's time to also take care of that.
- Vaccinations – It's important to keep children vaccinated according to recommended schedules. There are also vaccines recommended for adults that shouldn't be ignored or delayed.
Remember, some visits with your doctor's office can be conducted using telemedicine. This convenient option allows you to visit with a doctor virtually so you can provide information about your health, share concerns, ask questions and get prescriptions. If you have to go in person, know that doctors and hospitals are taking precautions to keep you as safe as possible.
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Date Last Reviewed: May 26, 2020
Editorial Review: Andrea Cohen, Editorial Director, Baldwin Publishing, Inc. Contact Editor