While the COVID-19 outbreak continues, we are continuing to find ways to be there for our patients and to keep our patients and seniors in the community informed and safe. Below are our answers to commonly asked questions. If you have further questions, please reach out to your first line of defense – your primary care provider. We have also compiled a range of relevant resources on our Live Better Blog, from how to prepare for a virtual visit to tips for coping during times of high stress.
Frequently Asked Questions
Iora is taking the threat very seriously. We have implemented a number of new and updated processes and procedures to best protect our patients and team members. We quickly shifted much of our care to telephone and video visits and have implemented a tablet loaner pilot program for those patients who don’t have the technology to participate in a video visit. We know that in-person care continues to be important and have initiated creative solutions for some in-person needs including drive-thru INRs where patients do not need to leave their car to get the INR test. For those patients coming in for an in-person visit, we are following strict guidance on face mask usage and limiting visitors that come. We still want to make sure that family and/or caregivers can join visits, but because of the heightened risk, we ask that they join by phone or video whenever possible.
Yes, we are accepting new patients. Iora Primary Care will be serving as many patients as possible with telephone and video appointments rather than in person, first. If the provider determines that an in-person appointment is needed, they will set up an in-person visit with the patient. There is so much we can do to help our patients over the phone or video which will allow patients to stay safe at home. And what we know is that the safest place for people to be right now is home.
Iora patients should call us. If you do not feel well, call. As always, we are available 24/7 for our patients and want to hear from you.
We are limiting the number of visitors at our practice to reduce the chance of exposure to COVID-19. We encourage patients’ families and caregivers to join visits via phone or video. If your visitor is not able to join via phone or video, we are allowing one visitor to attend the appointment per patient. All visitors will be asked to follow the same screening guidelines as our patients in order to physically attend.
Like most outpatient primary care practices, we currently do not have a supply of the COVID-19 vaccine at Iora Primary Care to distribute to patients. All vaccines will be distributed through the state. We are applying with the state to receive a supply; however, the determination of how vaccines will be distributed is still up to our state and local health officials.
When we have more information about the availability of vaccines – even if it means that we direct you to a different location for the shots – we will pass that information to you as soon as possible. The most important thing is that you get vaccinated as soon as you can.
The first vaccinations in the US will be shipped in late December to early January. These are for frontline healthcare workers and older adults in high risk settings for COVID-19, such as nursing homes and other long term care facilities. If you are not in the first priority phase, you’ll likely be prioritized in future phases some time in 2021.
We are committed to helping our patients get access to vaccines as soon as possible and are coordinating with community and healthcare partners to help first priority Iora patients access the vaccine.
While we are working hard to get the vaccine in our practice, state and local health departments are in charge of distribution. Whether at an Iora practice or in the community, as soon as we can identify a location where you can get vaccinated, we will let you know.
If you have the opportunity to be vaccinated in the community, please do so.
We will be calling our patients when we have more information. Additionally, we’ll be sending updates through our email announcements and sharing information here on our website.
All vaccines available to the public in the U.S., including COVID-19 vaccines, must go through the process of approval by the FDA. There are many strict protections in place, and scientists and doctors who study vaccines at the FDA, to help ensure that these COVID-19 vaccines are safe. This is to ensure ultimate safety and success for the general public.
While the vaccine may be new, scientists have been studying similar vaccines for viruses like this coronavirus for many years now, which is one of the reasons they were able to move so quickly with COVID-19.
In this time of social distancing and self-quarantines, there are plenty of relaxation techniques to ease your anxiety. Check out these tips and resources from our team of Behavioral Health Specialists to help you uncover how to ease anxiety through managing stress, combatting “low” moods and developing a consistent routine.
We know that it’s hard to be at home without being with others. To help stay connected, we will be hosting some events online for the community. Follow us on Facebook to get notified of upcoming events and see past events.
We’ve also compiled some free resources on our blog to help keep your brain active and keep you connected while you are at home.
Yes. We know it isn’t easy but please stay home as much as possible to reduce your risk of being exposed. If you have to leave the house, avoid crowds, keep away from others who are sick, follow the CDC advice and wear a mask or cloth face covering, limit close contact and wash your hands often. You can find more information on Iora’s blog (https://ioraprimarycare.com/blog/) and of course on the CDC site: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/specific-groups/high-risk-complications.html
“We are in this together and are here for you, our patients.”
– Rushika Fernandopulle, Co-Founder and CEO
Schedule a virtual visit with a primary care provider
Now more than ever, we’re here to help you get the best care possible. Whether you’re new to Iora Primary Care or you’re an established patient, by scheduling a virtual visit, you can talk to your Medicare primary care provider — by phone or video — from the comfort and safety of your home.
- Meet virtually with your primary care provider for your appointments.
- Easily invite a caregiver or loved one to your virtual visit.
- Allow your care team to get to know your home environment.