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A message from doctors and nurse practitioners about covid-19

We are part of your communities. We know you, and you know us. As we all deal with COVID-19, we want to be a part of the solution; we want to educate and empower you to be a part of the solution also

Note: Ada Icon supports the opinions put forth in this letter.

Ada Icon viewers:
We, your doctors and your nurse practitioners, are living and working together with you as the COVID-19 pandemic is unfolding.  

We are currently seeing an increasing number of people with this infection in Putnam county and surrounding areas.  We want to do everything we can to limit the spread of COVID-19 and need your help.  

What you do matters. The basic actions you keep hearing about, i.e. washing hands, social distancing, wearing masks, and staying home when you are sick, actually do much to prevent the spread of COVID-19.  

It seems like everyone is on board with the hand washing, but when you start to get to the other recommendations, there is unfortunate controversy.  

Wear a mask - it protects others; 
It is their mask that protects you

Perhaps the most controversial issue of all is masking. Despite what you may have heard, there are more and more studies and good science to support wearing masks/face coverings.  

As doctors, we always weigh risk against benefit. Thankfully, we can say with great confidence that there is NO physical harm from wearing masks. While they do not completely eliminate the spread of COVID-19, the evidence is clear that they significantly decrease transmission.  

Wearing a mask is not pleasant, but so worth the discomfort and inconvenience (and even stigma) because it prevents the mask-wearer's airborne respiratory droplets from being propelled into the environment where they can be breathed in by another human.  

It is clear that an infected person can be spreading COVID-19 in respiratory droplets for days before they develop symptoms and that some people can be spreading COVID-19 to others in this way even if their infection never causes them symptoms.  

This is a major difficulty in containing this particular virus, and it is why wearing masks in public even when you feel fine is so important. The biggest function of your mask is to protect others from your respiratory droplets. Your mask helps protects them. It is their mask that helps protect you.  

Sometimes, a COVID infection starts with symptoms that are subtle. Some people have symptoms that they think are "just allergies." There are cases of COVID-19 that have started with only abdominal pain or diarrhea.  

It is best to err on the side of caution when you have infectious symptoms of any kind. Stay home until you see how things play out with your runny nose or headache or diarrhea. If you have been exposed to an ill family member, stay away from others as much as possible to avoid being that "asymptomatic" or "presymptomatic" spreader.  

Avoid large groups, meet outside whenever possible
In general, be wise about where you go and what you do. Avoid large groups, meet outside whenever possible. This infection is going to be around for a while, and we have to learn how to best function, with the health and well-being of our whole community in mind.  

We are your local healthcare providers. We have taken care of your families for years, and we hope to have the privilege of continuing that care for years to come.  

We are part of your communities. We know you, and you know us. As we all deal with COVID-19, we want to be a part of the solution, and we want to educate and empower you to be a part of the solution also.  

Click here for a Mayo Clinic article "How much protection do face masks offer?

Please reach out to us with your questions. Clearly, we don't have all the answers, but we do want to assist in whatever way we can as we navigate this pandemic.  

N. Corry Clinton, MD
Kayla Croy, APRN CNP
Jacinta Eickholt, MD
Jeff Eiden, MD
Leah Eiden, MD

Paige Frey, APRN CNP
Darrel Hotmire, DO
Brendon Hovest, APRN CNP
Kristine Kaufman, APRN CNP
Wesley A. Klir, MD

Melissa Langhals, APRN CNP
Justin Laudick, APRN CNP
Katelyn Leopold, MD
Jennifer Maag, MD
Alisa Marzec, MD

Steve McCullough, DO
Amber Seggerson, APRN CNP
Andrea Smith, APRN CNP
Megan Strauer, APRN CNP
Danielle Westrick, MD 

*We are writing as individuals and not as representatives of our employers or hospital systems.*