An Urgent Update on COVID-19 from Pacific Eye Institute
At Pacific Eye Institute, we continue to work with our physicians and staff to prepare for any potential impact of the coronavirus for our patients, teams, and facilities. We’re closely following the latest updates from the CDC and the California Department of Health and, in particular, guidelines from the American Academy of Ophthalmology – as it specifically relates to the concerns most relevant for our patients and care teams. The State of California has lifted some of the restrictions on medical practices and we are excited to welcome back more patients and staff in the safest way possible.
To keep our patients and staff safe, Pacific Eye Institute has instituted the following procedures to manage all in-office visits:
- Telehealth – As appropriate, we are offering teleophthalmology/virtual visits to patients to connect with their eyecare providers. Please contact us at (800) 345-8789 or CLICK HERE to learn more about telehealth visits.
- Clinic Visits – We are seeing patients in-clinic. Please call to schedule your appointment.
- Screening – All patients and staff will be screened with temperature readings before entry to our clinics.
- Limiting Visitors – Patients will be restricted from attending appointments with family members or others unless required for a legal (i.e. parent/guardian) or medical (i.e. mobility) reason.
- Masking – To keep our patients safe, all clinic staff will be wearing either surgical or alternative facemasks, as described by the CDC and California Departement of Health. To keep our staff safe, patients are encouraged to wear alternative facemasks in the clinic.
- Environment – Surfaces and equipment are disinfected between patients, and our waiting rooms have been arranged to accommodate appropriate social distancing standards.
In adherence to Governor Newsom’s executive order, Pacific Eye Institute will be performing scheduled urgent and elective surgeries. Our schedulers are reaching out to patients, but if you have not yet been contacted about your scheduled surgery, please contact us at (800) 345-8789.
COVID-19 in Ophthalmology
A recent article published by the American Academy of Ophthalmology noted that several reports suggest that COVID-19 can cause conjunctivitis (commonly known as “pink eye”). Although not as common of a symptom as fever, cough and difficulty breathing, this is something our scheduling team will take into consideration.
More About COVID-19 from the CDC
The virus is thought to spread mainly between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet) through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. It also may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.
Here are a few tips to protect yourself from this respiratory illness:
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
As we all band together to work through this unprecedented global health crisis, we thank you for your patience and apologize in advance for any inconvenience it may cause. We will continue to update this page as new information emerges, but for additional information, please call us at (800) 345-8979.