Almost half of adults say that they or someone in their family has skipped or delayed getting medical care during the coronavirus pandemic. And 11 percent say they or their family member’s condition got worse as a result, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation Health Tracking Poll released last week.
A report in The Boston Globe estimated emergency rooms across the country have seen a 40 percent drop in ER cases.
It’s not just adults. I recently discussed data showing parents fearful of the coronavirus are skipping their children’s vaccinations for illnesses like the measles.
Doctors worry that patients are ignoring their symptoms and delaying life-saving treatment, or forgoing their routine preventative care, out of fear they may contract the coronavirus in hospitals and doctors’ offices. But strokes, heart attacks, and other medical issues and injuries don’t stop just because COVID-19 is spreading.
Hospitals and doctors’ offices are now sanitized on a regular basis. Providers and staff wear masks, screen patients and take other measures to keep patients safe.
If you have any kind of health concern, call your doctor. And if you experience symptoms like chest pain, slurred speech and facial drooping, abdominal pain, an asthma attack, or some kind of accident or serious injury, call 911 or go to the hospital immediately.