Flouting Mandates and Misinforming Patients Bring Swift Consequences (ie, Loss of License)

Flouting Mandates and Misinforming Patients Bring Swift Consequences (ie, Loss of License)

We’re all entitled to our opinions. More often than not, differences occur between healthcare providers and patients, such as when you’re trying to convince a reluctant individual to get the COVID-19 vaccine. When there’s disagreement between a licensed physician and governing bodies, though, there’s a more statutory concern. And a physician in Oregon just got a taste of how severe the consequences are for those who stray from passive disagreement to outright disobedience. The primary …

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Timely Update: You Can Administer Flu Shots and COVID-19 Vaccine in the Same Visit

Timely Update: You Can Administer Flu Shots and COVID-19 Vaccine in the Same Visit

Just as urgent care operators are gearing up for one of the more precarious flu seasons in memory—while also continuing to guard against the health and economic threats of the COVID-19 pandemic—the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced a significant change from its most recent seasonal vaccine recommendations. Where the CDC at first advised against administering a flu shot (or any other shot) within 2 weeks of receiving a COVID-19 vaccine, they now say …

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Kids Are Back in School. Are You Prepared for the Growing Threat of MIS-C?

Kids Are Back in School. Are You Prepared for the Growing Threat of MIS-C?

Many school systems across the country are seeing increases in confirmed cases of COVID-19 among their student bodies. The threat appears to be especially great in elementary schools, which are full of children who so far are not recommended to get vaccinated. As such, it’s very possible that urgent care centers will start seeing more children who have been exposed, whether they’re symptomatic or not. Ensure you have adequate testing supplies and, in preparation for …

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Be Vigilant for Prescription Seekers and Signs of Drug Abuse as the Pandemic Goes on

Be Vigilant for Prescription Seekers and Signs of Drug Abuse as the Pandemic Goes on

A study just published in Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) reveals that drug overdoses attributed to benzodiazepines were 43% higher in April to June 2020—just as the COVID-19 pandemic surged—compared with the same period a year earlier. That coincided with a jump in related emergency room visits (24%) at a time when EDs were scrambling to keep up with the demands of the pandemic while also trying to maintain safety of patients and staff. …

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As the Pandemic Goes On, Vaccines Are Shown to Protect Against Serious Illness with Delta

As the Pandemic Goes On, Vaccines Are Shown to Protect Against Serious Illness with Delta

COVID-19 vaccines are proving to not only diminish the risk of patients becoming infected with the original SARS-CoV-2 virus and its variants, but also to protect against serious illness in patients who do become infected—including those infected with the Delta variant. A study published in Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report revealed that vaccinated patients diagnosed with the Delta variant of COVID-19 are less likely to require hospitalization or visits to the emergency room or urgent …

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How Bad Is the COVID-19 Surge? Hospitals Are Suggesting Patients Visit Urgent Care Instead of the ED

How Bad Is the COVID-19 Surge? Hospitals Are Suggesting Patients Visit Urgent Care Instead of the ED

With hospitalizations for COVID-19 at their highest point since January of this year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s COVID data tracker, some hospital systems are putting out the word that urgent care centers may be the best option for nonemergent complaints. WVU Medicine in West Virginia, for one, went to the local media to announce that patients with complaints like ear or throat pain, abdominal complaints and other similar issues should …

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Let the Walgreens Incident Be a Reminder: Cybersecurity Always Has to Be Top of Mind

Let the Walgreens Incident Be a Reminder: Cybersecurity Always Has to Be Top of Mind

Walgreens inadvertently left the data of millions of its customers unprotected thanks to an apparent oversight in the creation of an app used for COVID-19 test registrations. As reported by Recode, information—including names, contact information, and even the results of COVID-19 tests—on anyone who was tested at a Walgreens location within the last year could have been exposed on the open web. While this breach was not the work of hackers or other cybercriminals, the …

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Pediatric COVID-19 Cases Are at Their Peak—and the Data Haven’t Caught Up with School Openings Yet

Pediatric COVID-19 Cases Are at Their Peak—and the Data Haven’t Caught Up with School Openings Yet

Cases of COVID-19 in children grew 62% between August 5 and September 9 of this year (from 93,824 to 243,373), according to data collected from state departments of health by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association. Hospitalizations are up among infected children, too, according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The scary part is, these data were collected before schools even opened up in many big …

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Now It’s Been Proven: COVID-19 Vaccines Reduce Hospitalizations (and Even Trips to Urgent Care)

Now It’s Been Proven: COVID-19 Vaccines Reduce Hospitalizations (and Even Trips to Urgent Care)

Data on the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines, thus far, have focused on how well vaccination protects patients from infection. We know that the vaccines, overall, are approximately 95% effective against infection, though that figure may be as low as 66% against the Delta variant. We also know, however, that breakthrough cases occur more often than we might have anticipated. An article just published in the New England Journal of Medicine appears to be the first …

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Let Vaccine-Hesitant Patients Know Their Risk of Dying with COVID-19 Is 11 Times Higher

Let Vaccine-Hesitant Patients Know Their Risk of Dying with COVID-19 Is 11 Times Higher

Data showing that vaccination lowers the risk of becoming infected with SARS-CoV-2, and that vaccination reduces the severity of disease on breakthrough cases, have been available for some time. That wasn’t enough to convince the entire population that getting a COVID-19 shot is a good idea, somehow. Maybe the three studies published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention last week will be more convincing. The most striking reveals that risk of death in …

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