EHT update March 14

Updated March 14, 2020

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To: Swinomish Tribal Community Members
From:Sarah Wilborn, Swinomish Chief Medical Officer
Date: March 14, 2020
Subject: Health Priorities and Frequently Asked Questions

The Swinomish Medical Clinic is working to handle the COVID-19 virus outbreak with the same high quality, compassionate care that we strive for each day. We are working hard to ensure that the clinic continues to be a safe place to access care. As you hear more about COVID-19, please keep in mind:

  1. For now, the risk of contracting the virus is low in Skagit County.
  2. The majority of people (80%) who contract this virus experience MINOR illness that does not require medical assistance.
  3. Testing is very limited and only used for people with severe symptoms. Testing is happening according to federal (CDC) and state health guidelines. You will be hearing more from our tribal leaders about what is being done to combat the virus outbreak.

You will be hearing more from our tribal leaders about what is being done to combat the virus outbreak.

THE SWINOMISH MEDICAL CLINIC AND OTHER ESSENTIAL TRIBAL SERVICES REMAIN OPEN. We are also working to provide weekend coverage for medical consultations. If you have flu-like or respiratory symptoms, PLEASE CALL BEFORE COMING IN. In order to minimize contact with others in the clinic, we have procedures in place to evaluate your health condition by phone, or even in your car, prior to being seen in the clinic itself.

If you have flu-like or respiratory symptoms, PLEASE CALL BEFORE COMING IN. In order to minimize contact with others in the clinic, we have procedures in place to evaluate your health condition by phone, or even in your car, prior to being seen in the clinic itself.

WHAT HAPPENS IF I GET SYMPTOMS OF CORONAVIRUS OR ANOTHER SEVERE RESPIRATORY INFECTION?

The bright side is there is forewarning and some time to prepare:

YOU DO NOT NEED TO GO TO THE EMERGENCY ROOM unless you are having trouble breathing or have a very high fever that is not responding to medication. If you decide you must go to the clinic, emergency room, or urgent care, call ahead or have someone call for you so on site medical staff are prepared to see you.

Most people can manage the symptoms of the virus on their own at home with over-the-counter medication. Hospitals are already crowded and beds are needed for the most critically ill. Remember, only a few people will develop serious symptoms.

Most children are handling COVID-19 with only mild symptoms for a few days. Use pediatric doses of the same over-the-counter medications mentioned above.

Social distancing can make people feel isolated or lonely. Keep your distance physically, but let your loved ones know you are there and love them with a text, phone call, or video chat.

MOST IMPORTANTLY, please call us at the Swinomish Medical Clinic at (360) 466-3167 if you have questions.

Thank you and take care of each other,
Sarah Wilborn, Chief Medical Officer
Swinomish Medical Clinic

EHT update March 14