Dr. John Baniewicz, Chief Medical Officer for Lake Health, shares an update to our patients and community members:
Lake Health stands ready to care for you and your family, from everyday preventive health care to major emergencies. We need the help of our community members to ensure we remain this way.
As cases of COVID-19 continue to rise in our community, health care systems are increasing bed capacity to care for patients needing advanced treatment for COVID-19. Lake Health has been able to respond to this need so far and has cancelled upcoming elective surgeries requiring an overnight stay to ensure we have the staff, supplies and space to care for an increasing number of sick patients. Extensive community spread of COVID-19 not only increases the number of very sick patients who require hospitalization, it makes it more likely that our caregivers become sick themselves or have to quarantine because a household family member has been exposed.
Many of us look forward to the holidays as a time to gather, celebrate and reconnect - but this year, we must take extra precautions and celebrate in new, smaller ways. We know our community has grown weary of these precautions, but we must remain committed to adapting our daily routine to help slow the spread of this virus in Lake County.
Please continue to follow these guidelines to help slow the rapid rise of COVID-19 in our community:
- Stay home as much as possible. When you do need to shop for supplies, consider curbside or delivery options when possible and always wear your mask. Combine trips.
- Avoid social gatherings and events. Celebrate with those in your household and avoid travel.
- Continue to seek medical care when needed. Telehealth visits are a great way to connect with your primary care doctor for routine care or when you're sick, without needing to leave your home. Options like Lake Health Online Quick Care are available with no appointment needed. Visitor restrictions remain in effect for our facilities and physician offices.
- Work from home if possible, and turn meetings into calls or video conferences.
- Wear a mask when you're around people outside of your household.
- Stay home if you're feeling sick. Learn best practices on what do do if you're sick or caring for someone who is sick.
- Wash hands often, and use hand sanitizer when you don't have access to soap and water.
From the bottom of my heart, I thank you for making sacrifices this holiday season to help keep our health care workers safe and ready to care for our community.
Stay safe and well,
John Baniewicz, MD
Lake Health Chief Medical Officer