Ask Dr. Dunn

Please send any questions to HealthyLiving@1199Funds.org.

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“Stop the Spread of Germs” Fliers from the CDC

If you are experiencing any symptoms of the flu or the coronavirus, please call your healthcare provider or Teladoc right away.

For more information, visit www.cdc.gov/coronavirus.

FAQs

Dr. Dunn will post answers to commonly asked questions here. Check this page regularly.

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has advised that symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, coughing, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, sore throat, headache and loss of sense of taste or smell.

I don’t have symptoms, but how can I protect myself from COVID-19?

You can take the same steps to protect yourself from COVID-19 as you would to protect yourself against colds and the flu:

  • 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.
  • Cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home if you are sick, except to get medical care.
  • Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces you touch.
  • Practice “social distancing.”

Check Dr. Dunn’s page on our website for the latest preventive information as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s website, www.CDC.gov.

What is social distancing?

Social distancing means keeping several feet of space between yourself and others whenever possible. Maintaining a distance from others will reduce the risk of an infected individual communicating the disease to you. In addition to practicing social distancing on an individual basis, it’s a good idea to avoid gatherings involving close contact with others.

How can I protect myself from the COVID-19 virus when taking public transportation?

If you have to take public transportation, try to avoid touching grab bars, and if you must touch them, use hand sanitizer or wash your hands before touching your face. You should also try to distance yourself from others as much as possible.

I think I may have been exposed to COVID-19: What should I do?

If you think you may have been exposed to someone with COVID-19, avoid traveling on public transportation and waiting in crowded waiting rooms and call Teladoc at 800-TELADOC (835-2362) or visit www.Teladoc.com, and they will help you get the care you need.

What if I need to get the test?

The Teladoc doctor will connect you with the city or state health department for diagnostic testing, tell you about any quarantine requirements you may need to follow and notify your primary care physician.

Do I have to pay for the test?

No, your Benefit Fund has you covered – there are no out-of-pocket costs for COVID-19 testing.

I'm asthmatic and am even more worried than the average person. Should I start feeling sick, does 1199SEIU fully cover the care associated with being treated for the coronavirus and the associated testing?

Yes. The Benefit Fund covers the diagnostic testing for coronavirus, or COVID-19, with no out-of-pocket cost to you. If you experience symptoms such as fever, cough or shortness of breath, call Teladoc 800-TELADOC (835-2362). You can speak with a doctor who can answer all of your questions about COVID-19, and determine if you need to be examined and tested. The Teladoc doctor can help find a medical center or a doctor who can provide all the services that you may need, as well as notify your primary care physician. Teladoc will even call ahead and let the doctor know that you may have COVID-19, so you can receive care as quickly as possible.

My wife has asthma—is she at greater risk if the virus is transmitted to her?

When people with asthma get respiratory infections or viruses, it can trigger or worsen their asthma symptoms.

People of all ages can be infected by the coronavirus. Older people (over 60) and people with pre-existing medical conditions (such as asthma, diabetes, heart disease) appear to be more vulnerable to becoming severely ill with the virus.

If you or your wife develops fever, coughing and shortness of breath, call your primary care doctor or Teladoc, at 800-TELADOC (835-2362), immediately.

I have a respiratory condition and commute to work every day. I’m afraid of taking public transportation. Is there any type of leave available to me?

I understand your apprehension and fears as a healthcare worker with underlying health conditions. Our members are on the frontlines of caring for patients who may have COVID-19, and I commend your dedication and service to those who are sick. We have forwarded your question to the Union, as the Funds do not administer employment leave. Members who have a health condition and are concerned about potential exposure to COVID-19 should talk to their employers about their situation.

I am an 1199SEIU home care worker and don’t have symptoms of COVID-19, but I want to be tested for the virus. I have diabetes and live with family members who are at-risk, and I just want to be safe.

Under current federal guidelines, only those who are exhibiting symptoms and have been evaluated by a doctor who orders the test can be tested for the COVID-19, which the Fund covers. If you are in close contact with someone with COVID-19 and have or develop symptoms (fever, sore throat, nasal congestion, runny nose or cough), call your healthcare provider or Teladoc at 800-TELADOC (835-2362) and tell them about your condition and your exposure. If you haven’t created a Teladoc account, please do so as soon as possible at www.Teladoc.com to cut down on wait time. They can’t help you if you don’t have an account. A Teladoc physician will determine whether you need to be tested, but keep in mind that there is no treatment for COVID-19. People who are mildly ill may be able to isolate and care for themselves at home.

Visit the Union’s website for additional COVID-19 updates.

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