Tribute to Dr. Wenliang
Li Wenliang, MD, was an ophthalmologist in Wuhan China where the first official case of COVID-19 infection was detected. Dr. Wenliang was the first whistleblower who tried to warn his colleagues about a cluster of SARS-like pneumonia cases in December 2019. Soon after that, he was forced by Chinese officials to sign a letter stating that he made false comments to disturb the social order. Later, he contracted the virus from an asymptomatic glaucoma patient and died of COVID-19 infection.
The World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic on March 11th 2020. Unfortunately, COVID-19 is here to stay. However, collectively we can prevent its spread.
What does Eyecare MPLS do to prevent the spread of COVID-19?
Dr. Hennen is committed to keeping her patients, staff, and herself safe from COVID-19. She utilizes the following Eyecare MPLS safety protocols:
- Every morning upon entering the office Dr. Hennen and her staff wash their hands with soap and water for 20 seconds and repeat the procedure frequently throughout the day
- They log their temperature obtained with non-contact thermometer
- They log answers to COVID -19 screening questions
- They clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces in the morning, at the end of the day and throughout the day. The surfaces include tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, faucets, sinks. They keep a log of cleaning and disinfecting procedures.
- Dr. Hennen and her staff wear face masks and gloves throughout the day
- All exam and testing rooms are disinfected before and after patient’s use
- All doors to the exam and testing rooms are closed and have a sign “Room is sanitized and ready for use” if the room has been sanitized.
- Once the patient leaves that room, the sign is changed to “Room needs sanitizing” for staff to disinfect it prior to next patient’s use.
- Prior to entry into the office patients are screened for COVID-19 symptoms
- Patients are provided with hand sanitizer to clean their hands
- Patient’s temperature is checked with non-contact thermometer
- Patients are expected to wear facemasks and gloves during their visit. If they don’t have personal protective equipment, the face masks and gloves are provided by the clinic.
- There are no patients waiting in the waiting room. Upon entering the office, the patient is immediately escorted to the exam or testing room.
- Only one or two patients are scheduled per hour to prevent patient’s contact with other patients to minimize the risk of exposure
- Other people accompanying patient (with some exceptions) are not allowed in the office
What should I do to prevent the spread of COVID-19?
Wash your hands often
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
- If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 70% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
Avoid close contact
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick, even inside your home. If possible, maintain 6 feet between the person who is sick and other household members.
- Put distance between yourself and other people outside of your home.
- Remember that some people without symptoms may be able to spread the virus.
- Stay at least 6 feet (about 2 arms’ length) from other people.
- Stay out of crowded places and avoid mass gatherings.
- Keeping distance from others is especially important for people who are at higher risk of becoming seriously ill.
Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others
- You could spread COVID-19 to others even if you do not feel sick.
- Everyone should wear a cloth face cover when they have to go out in public, for example to the grocery store or to pick up other necessities.
- Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.
- The cloth face cover is meant to protect other people in case you are infected.
- Do NOT use a facemask meant for a healthcare worker.
- Continue to keep about 6 feet between yourself and others. The cloth face cover is not a substitute for social distancing.
Cover coughs and sneezes
- If you are in a private setting and do not have on your cloth face covering, remember to always cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow.
- Throw used tissues in the trash.
- Immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, clean your hands with a hand sanitizer that contains at least 70% alcohol.
Clean and disinfect
- Clean AND disinfect frequently-touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
- If surfaces are dirty, clean them. Use detergent or soap and water prior to disinfecting.
- Then, use a household disinfectant.
For more information about COVID-19, please visit the Center for Disease Control and Prevention