The pandemic has been a nightmare for everyone, but it has especially affected people who have chronic illnesses or need non-essential consultations with their physicians. And even if they do manage to get booked in, most people have concerns regarding contaminations in the hospital and how they could avoid contracting the virus.
In the past two years, we’ve seen a surge in developing technology to improve the quality and access to healthcare services. Many government and private organizations have set up initiatives and allotted resources dedicated to the cause of producing tech that can benefit everyone.
Telemedicine is one of these technological advancements that has been a relief for many of us. According to a report, there was a 154% increase in the number of telehealth-associated visits by people in the last few days of March in 2020.
Since the threat of the virus is not yet neutralized completely, we need to act responsibly, even if the official mandates for masking and social distancing are being taken down.
In order to protect ourselves and our loved ones, it is imperative that we are updated on the news regarding the COVID-19 virus pandemic. And with so much information overload in this age of technology, it is very easy to be distracted by false information.
Contacting virtual doctors regarding official news about the virus is the best way to be ahead of the curve. Have a look at the top questions about the COVID-19 virus that you can ask your online doctor during your next appointment.
1. Is There a New Strain of the Virus?
There have been multiple strains of the COVID-19 virus, but according to the CDC, there is only one Variant of Concern (VOC) right now, which is the omicron variant.
2. How is the New Strain Different from the Original Virus?
The omicron strain is different in a number of ways from the original Sars-Cov-2 virus. It has over 50 mutations, which enable it to remain unrecognizable by our immune systems. This makes it easier for the virus to be transmitted from one person to another, making it more contagious.
3. Does Omicron Cause More Severe Illness?
According to Dr. Bollinger of Johns Hopkins Medicine, there is evidence that the omicron variant results in mild disease than the previous variant— delta.
4. What Are the Symptoms of the New Strain?
While the delta variant produced symptoms of loss of smell, omicron-infected individuals have reported more symptoms of a sore throat and a subsequent hoarse voice. The five main symptoms of the omicron variant are:
- Runny Nose
- Mild Fatigue
- Sore Throat
- Sneezing in vaccinated individuals
However, these general trends may differ from the symptoms experienced by unvaccinated individuals.
5. How Do I Know if I Have the Virus?
You should contact an online physician and discuss your symptoms with them. The doctor can recommend the closest place where you can get tested for the virus. Do make sure to wear a mask and interact with as few people as possible.
6. What Happens After I Test Positive?
The first thing to do is to keep calm. You should sanitize your hands and surroundings often. Wear a mask and cover your coughs and sneezes with your elbow. Avoid sharing household items like cutlery, toothbrushes, clothes, towels, etc., with other people.
Your doctor may advise you to isolate yourself for at least 2 weeks, so make sure to follow through with that.
7. Can I Take Medication?
Don’t take any medicines without your doctor’s advice. Your physician may write you a prescription for common oral antiviral medications used to treat COVID-19 like Paxlovid and Molnupiravir, which are FDA approved.
8. I Don’t Have Insurance. Can I Still Receive Treatment?
For many people, the pandemic has been a cause of worry due to the rising costs of healthcare. However, some emerging organizations, such as TelMDCare, provide affordable medical services to people who don’t have access to insurance. TelMDCare also associates with a number of insurance providers to cater to people insured by them.
TelMDCare‘s online platform has a team of certified physicians available to discuss your problems and guide you in the best way. For quality healthcare information, contact TelMDCare today, and avail their services and a free follow-up.
About the Author
Dr. Grant H. is an online doctor with over eight years of experience in medicine. He is of the belief that virtual consultations are faster, give better results, and increase patient satisfaction.