Doctors helping people stay home and stay safe

Doctors helping people stay home and stay safe

South Okanagan-Similkameen doctors are now providing care by telephone and video conferencing in an attempt to stop the spread of COVID-19. People who need to see a doctor are urged to call their clinic ahead of time, not to show up unannounced. (Richard McGuire file photo)

In an effort to keep our communities protected, South Okanagan Similkameen doctors and nurse practitioners are providing care by telephone and video conference.

If you are in need of non-emergency medical care, call your doctors clinic to make an appointment. Residents who do not have a family provider should call their local walk-in clinic.

It is very important that residents call first and not “show up” at any medical clinic.

Family doctors, nurse practitioners and other healthcare professionals in the South Okanagan Similkameen are on the frontlines in the battle against COVID-19. “Primary care providers cannot do this alone and what the public does now will impact the health of our region in the weeks and months ahead,” states Dr. Greg Selinger, Board Chair of the South Okanagan Division of Family Practice. “We are echoing the Provincial Health Officer’s plea that if you have not been practicing social distancing, start now.”

Local doctors and nurse practitioners reiterate BC Health Minister Adrian Dix’s message urging employers NOT to require sick notes from staff members at this time. This places an unnecessary burden and risk on our healthcare system.

Our province is in a state of emergency. Here is the directive from our Provincial Health Officer, Dr Bonnie Henry:

• Stay home unless it is absolutely necessary for you to leave.

• Cancel all public gatherings and events. This includes outdoor sporting events, conferences, meetings, religious gatherings.

• Avoid common greetings such as handshakes.

• Keep a distance of at least two arms lengths from others.

• Wash your hands often and for at least 20 seconds. Do not touch your face.

• Cough and sneeze into a tissue. Use your elbow if you have to.

• Tell your loved ones to do the same.