A MESSAGE FROM HATTIESBURG CLINIC EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, TOMMY G. THORNTON, FACMPE
JULY 2, 2020
COVID-19 NUMBERS CONTINUE TO FLUCTUATE
AN UPDATE FROM HATTIESBURG CLINIC EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, TOMMY G. THORNTON, FACMPE
In the last two weeks, Mississippi has seen massive increases in new positive COVID-19 cases. According to national and state data, Mississippi had the nation’s fastest growth in new coronavirus cases over a seven-day period (June 21-28) with 4,890 new cases, a 248% increase from the week prior. The influx in COVID-19 cases recently is concerning, so we must continue to follow the safety and health precautions set in place by the Mississippi State Department of Health (MSDH), the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as well as our state and local officials. According to the City of Hattiesburg’s Mayor, Toby Baker, in his daily update, our local hospital systems are starting to see an increase of non-COVID-related medical conditions (http://www.hattiesburgms.com/coronavirus/). It is extremely important that you as a patient are continuing to see your physician – whether through telehealth or an actual on-site appointment – so that any medical conditions you are experiencing can be addressed and monitored. We do not want our patients having to go to the hospital if we can care for you proactively.
Hattiesburg Clinic takes infection prevention very seriously, and we want to ensure our patients that the highest levels of safety are being observed. At each of our locations, we will continue to screen everyone who enters the building for COVID-19 symptoms and risk factors. The screening process is designed to promptly identify, separate, and ensure all patients are wearing the proper face-covering prior to coming in contact with others. Screening patients (and staff) before they enter the facility help prevents the spread of disease and reduce exposures for other patients and health care personnel.
In recent weeks, the CDC and the World Health Organization (WHO) have updated the list of symptoms associated with COVID-19. Symptoms now include, but are not limited to: fever, chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion, runny nose, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Patients who tested positive for COVID-19 have reported experiencing a wide range of these symptoms with symptoms ranging from mild to severe.
If you think you have been exposed or may have COVID-19, please visit the Cough & Fever Clinic located at the Cloverleaf Medical Plaza, 5909 US Highway 49, across the street from Walmart. The Cough & Fever Clinic also offers Curbside COVID testing. To make an appointment, please visit www.hattiesburgclinic.com/curbsidecovid.
In observance of Independence Day, Hattiesburg Clinic locations will have varying business hours starting Friday, July 3, through Sunday, July 5. The Cough & Fever Clinic/Curbside COVID Testing will remain open and operating during normal business hours with the exception of Friday, July 3. Please visit our website to see a full listing of our holiday hours: www.hattiesburgclinic.com/independence-day-holiday-hours.
Hattiesburg Clinic also offers an additional site for lab work and pre-operative testing services for Hattiesburg Clinic patients. The pre-operative testing site is for patients who are having a service performed at one of our outpatient surgical facilities. Pre-operative testing services include COVID-19 swabs (this is not a COVID-19 testing site), lab work, EKG, and chest x-rays. The pre-operative testing site is located in the same building as Dermatology at #6 Medical Blvd., next to Internal Medicine, and is open Monday through Friday, 7:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Hattiesburg Clinic is no longer offering drive-thru lab services.
Finally, telehealth visits will remain the priority for routine follow-ups. Most insurance carriers will continue to cover telehealth visits throughout the pandemic; however, we advise patients to check with their insurance company prior to their appointment. For more information on telehealth services, please visit www.hattiesburgclinic.com/iris.
Thank you again for entrusting Hattiesburg Clinic with your care.
Tommy G. Thornton, FACMPE
Hattiesburg Clinic, PA