January 3, 2022
Happy New Year everyone – it has certainly started with a bang!
As we’re sure you are all aware, case rates for Covid-19 fueled by the highly infectious Omicron variant are at record highs. Our office staff is working tirelessly to answer your questions and schedule appointments in a timely manner as the demand for these services has increased significantly. We thank you for your patience and very much appreciate the gratitude many of you have already expressed for our staff’s hard work.
Some very quick updates:
- If you have a rapid test done at home and it is positive, that is officially a diagnosis of COVID and does not need another test to confirm. We will not be scheduling appointments for people who already have a diagnosis of COVID-19 based on at home testing, unless they are truly ill and in need of in-office medical assessment and care.
- The Baystate Emergency department has asked us not to send patients to their emergency department unless the issue truly needs emergency level care. They are not able to see patients with mild cold symptoms looking for COVID testing. Please contact our office or visit the https://www.mass.gov/covid-19-testing website if you are in need of a test.
- Even though there are numerous COVID PCR testing sites in the community, ALL facilities are experiencing demand that far exceeds capacity. Here at NAP, we increased our COVID testing capacity last week by adding more appointments each day to help with demand. We are doing our best to test as many of our patients as we possibly can.
- We continue to ask that only one parent accompany a child to their sick visits in the VIP area. Ideally this should be a parent who is not currently under isolation or quarantine restrictions. Other parents are welcome to join by phone. This is meant to reduce exposures to our staff, other patients, and your family. Thank you for understanding.
Thank you all for your ongoing strength and resilience as we get through one of the toughest phases of this pandemic yet. We are grateful for all your positive thoughts and cooperation.
Northampton Area Pediatrics