PHOENIX - The ongoing coronavirus pandemic is putting healthcare workers across the country in the middle of the storm, with many of them putting themselves at risk every day.
"People are coming in looking for COVID-19 testing, and we don’t have COVID-19 testing if you just walk-in and ask for it," said Dr. Frank Lovecchio with Valleywise Health.
Dr. Lovecchio, an ER doctor, says he believes physicians across Arizona are becoming frustrated with the lack of testing kits for COVID-19, partly because so many people are coming into healthcare facilities, afraid that they have it.
Getting the test is not a simple task.
"We have to call the Department of Health to help us run the test, so maybe we can run the test and give it to them, or they actually come and get it, and that’s revolving, do that’s what has to happen. They don’t give us an answer until about three to five days, which is very, very difficult," said Dr. Lovecchio.
Dr. Lovecchio is encouraging anyone who is showing symptoms to stay at home, unless they are very, very sick.
"Maybe pneumonia in both lungs, perhaps, maybe on a respirator," said Dr. Lovecchio. "Maybe you’ve traveled to one of these places where COVID-19 seems to be endemic."
Dr. Lovecchio says humanity sees viruses all time, many of which have no specific treatment other than targeting the symptoms. He says the coronavirus is no different, in the sense that like any other virus, sooner or later health experts will catch up to it.
"What’s scaring us now is a little bit of the unknown, and I think give it a year or so, and hopefully, the smoke will clear," said Dr. Lovecchio. "Maybe this might be something we deal with every year, and maybe we’ll figure out a vaccine in a year or two, and we’ll have a better understanding of this."
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In order to protect yourself from a possible infection, the CDC recommends:
Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
Stay home when you are sick.
Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.