Scheduling Surgery While A Pandemic Is Happening

Despite the pandemic that is taking up most medical professionals' time right now, other health problems still need attention. Some of these require surgery, but unlike times when you could just schedule a surgery and have it done, now you need to take extra precautions.

Doctors know more about the novel coronavirus now and have more experience dealing with patients who need to have other conditions treated during this time. That means that the measures your doctor and surgeon use to protect you and themselves from the coronavirus now are the ones that seem to work best. As you schedule and prepare for your surgery, pay attention to what your doctor wants you to do as that will keep you as safe as possible.

Use Telehealth Whenever Possible

Your doctor may want to restrict meetings with you to telehealth only, when possible. You may need to meet with the doctor in person once or twice, depending on what procedures you need to be done or what testing you need to investigate the health problem you have. But other than that, if your doctor says other appointments need to be conducted by videoconferencing platforms, for example, don't argue. If you can stay at home for an appointment, that helps limit your exposure to areas where you could contract the coronavirus.

Designate Specific People as Visitors

If you'll need to be in the hospital after your surgery, designate specific people as visitors and give their names to whoever is creating a list of people who can be in your room. Many hospitals are limiting visitors to help stop the spread of the virus, and some have had to limit visitors to prevent incidents like the ones that have been happening at Utah Valley Hospital in Provo, Utah, where five different people have tried to get into the ICU to see just how crowded it really was. Obey visitor limits, too; for example, if your surgeon tells you that you can name only two people as visitors and no one else can enter the hospital, don't try to sneak a third person in.

Be Prepared for Postponements

Unless your surgery is urgent, there's the risk that it could be postponed. Maybe the coronavirus caseload is increasing at that hospital; maybe your surgeon isn't feeling well. In any case, if you're told you have to postpone, just try to reschedule as soon as possible. Your surgeon doesn't want to postpone for minor reasons, so if you get that call telling you to reschedule, you know it's important.

Your surgeon and all the medical personnel involved in your care want to keep you safe. Any delays or changes to how you prepare for your surgery are necessary ones. Don't worry that you won't be able to have your surgery done; your surgeon wants you to be happy and healthy and will do what's possible to get the procedure done. For more information about general surgical, reach out to a professional.