If you have questions, the Physician-Patient Alliance for Health & Safety launched a free online service (the CV Virtual Clinic) where patients can speak with experienced registered nurses and get personalized answers to their questions.
The CV Virtual Clinic has been made possible by the generous grant support of BMS-Pfizer Alliance, as well as the efforts and resources of the American Heart Association, AC Forum, Heart Rhythm Society, StopAfib.org, Mended Hearts, and Preventive Cardiovascular Nurses Association. To read more about it, please click here.
For great advice and resources from our cardiovascular partners:
American Heart Association – Call 911 if It’s a Medical Emergency
Reports from around the country, including Milwaukee and San Diego, are that the number of calls to 911 have decreased.
Says the American Heart Association (together with Association of Black Cardiologists, American College of Cardiology, American Academy of Neurology, American College of Emergency Physicians, Heart Failure Society of America, Heart Rhythm Society, and Society of Cardiovascular Angiography & Interventions):
COVID-19 is definitely not stopping people from having heart attacks, strokes and cardiac arrests. We fear it is stopping people from going to the hospital and that can be devastating.
You might think a hospital is the last place you should go now. That’s why we – the leaders of major national organizations dedicated to saving people from heart disease and stroke – feel it’s necessary to say this loud and clear:
Calling 911 immediately is still your best chance of surviving or saving a life.
It is SAFE for EVERYONE to call 911.
It is SAFE for ANYONE to go to the hospital.
Preventive Cardiovascular Nurses Association and Heart Rhythm Society Advice Advice To Not Ignore Signs of Heart Attack or Stroke
A recent New York Times headline reads “Where Have All the Heart Attacks Gone?”
Although a reduction in the number of heart attacks might be seen as a good thing, the Preventive Cardiovascular Nurses Association advises patients not to delay seeing treatment, when necessary: “Patients should not ignore symptoms of heart attack or stroke, but should seek emergency care through normal channels.
And, if you’re a visual person, Heart Rhythm Society has this infographic:
AC Forum Advice for Patients in Quarantine Needing to be INR Tested
INR test measures the time for your blood to clot. Patients prescribed warfarin are required to undergo routine blood tests to make sure their dose is correct.
However, during this COVID-19 crisis, the CDC advises practicing social distancing, quarantining, and isolation.
There are many patients who regularly go to a clinic for testing, such as for INR testing, a routine that is made difficult by social distancing, quarantining, and isolation. AC Forum advises using home health options:
What strategies can be considered for patients who are unable to present to a clinic or lab for INR testing because they are currently in home quarantine? Clinics need to be creative and incorporate other modalities to deliver care to patients during this unique time. One option is to utilize home health for either POC or phlebotomy INR draw. Another option is to investigate or establish a mobile health unit for INR testing. Many organizations have adopted this strategy for high risk patients. Results are reported to the responsible clinic and the patient is managed by phone or through secure messaging.
StopAfib.org Advice on What Atrial Fibrillation Patients Need to Know About the COVID-19
Because there is a lot of misinformation on the Internet and even on the news, StopAfib.org has provided what advice for patients diagnosed with atrial fibrillation need to know about managing Afib during the current COVID-19 crisis.
Mended Hearts Advice on Precautions Cardiovascular Patients Should Take During COVID-19
Mended Hearts provides practical advice on what cardiovascular patients and other patients with an underlying condition should take during the current COVID-19 situation:
- Stock up on supplies.
- Take everyday precautions to keep space between yourself and others.
- When you go out in public, keep away from others who are sick.
- Clean your hands often by washing with soap and water or using an alcohol-based hand
- Avoid crowds and people who are sick.
- Avoid cruise travel and non-essential air travel.
- During a COVID-19 outbreak in your community, stay home as much as possible to further reduce your risk of being exposed.
- If someone in your home is sick, have them stay away from the rest of the household to
- reduce the risk of spreading the virus in your home.
- Avoid sharing personal household items such as cups and towels.