CCBT and COVID-19/Novel Corona Virus: Coping for Patients and Potential Patients
Thanks to all who are following the physical distancing guidance: The media messages are frightening, and almost everything is about avoiding risk. That makes sense, but CCBT knows that our patients need to also receive positive feedback for taking positive steps. The data from Ohio seems to say the following will help all of us:
The “Do Dos”
If you are physically distancing, keep it up. Here are the “do-dos”
- Do keep yourself 6 feet apart if out in public
- Do cough or sneeze into your elbow
- Do elbow bump
- Do use the phone to connect whenever possible
If you have underlying health concerns, especially if you’re over 60 years of age, here are the “do-dos”
- Do stay away from others as much as you possibly can
- Do postpone routine activities that can wait
- Do your daily routine—get up, shower, eat at the same time—be normal in your own home
- Do find ways to stay fit that keep you away from others if at all possible
For your mental health, here are the “do-dos”
- Feelings of Fear: Be aware of your positive and negative feelings, notice them but don’t be afraid of them
- Expecting the Worst Thoughts: Listen to any “expecting the worst” thoughts like “I can’t do anything, all is doomed” and notice that these are not the only way to think
- Alternative Ideas and Actions: Create alternative ideas and actions to take, like “If I physically distance and control my exposure, I can protect myself and others.” Physical distancing works, so keep in mind how that’s an alternative, health action.
- Results and Rewards: Notice the results and reward yourself—Everyday, you aren’t sick and have been successful with your alternative ideas and actions, notice that. Reward yourself with a pat on the back, or maybe a special treat available in your home.
Practicing good health habits is important, here are some “do-dos”
- Wash Your Hands Often (see below for guidance on how to do that effectively)
- Don’t Touch Your Face if you Don’t Have To Do So
- Find Places if You Out that Are not Crowded
- Stay Fit while being Physically Distanced
- Keep Common Surfaces Cleaned with Products from the EPA List
Remember you’re a part of a team, all the folks you know, all the people you encounter, you’re on their team. Together, we will win the virus battle.
Apart We Stand Together!
The public health impact of the COVID-19 virus is unfolding every day, and CCBT is taking the following steps:
Are we open? As a behavioral health provider office, we are part of the overall healthcare system. CCBT will remain open unless the government indicates we should close. If you know you’ve been exposed to COVID-19 or have its symptoms, please cancel your session.
What about Physical Distancing?
- Please arrive just before your appointment.
- If seats are unavailable, please stay standing and 3 to 5 feet from others.
- DO NOT SHAKE HANDS WITH OR TOUCH YOUR PROVIDER.
- Do not lean into the windows when making appointments.
What is CCBT doing about cleaning? CCBT will begin Monday wiping down common areas and door handles with cleaning products that the EPA indicated can protect against the COVID-19 virus.
Can I do my session over the phone? We have begun to receive permission from insurance companies to receive payment for telephone or teleconferenced sessions. We will use the phone whenever possible and appropriate to make sure our patients who don’t have cameras or phones with video capacity still can access our behavioral health services. We continue to work on this.
Are there video conferencing options? The national demand for videoconferencing collapsed the service we subscribed to, and other ones as well. Even educational platforms for online classes were reportedly crashed. As a result, CCBT will use other videoconferencing, with your permission.
What about Quality of care? CCBT is working with national associations to make available to all our providers online courses on telehealth to keep everyone up to date. Courses from the American Psychological Association and The Chicago School of Professional Psychology are either already up or will be soon.
WASH YOUR HANDS FREQUENTLY AND DON’T TOUCH YOUR FACE.
If you are isolated and aren’t able to maintain contacts with others physically, keep in contact on the phone. Try not to interpersonally isolate while you physically distance yourself.
Keep things in perspective—stick to your routines but alter your physical proximity to others and keep your hands washed.
Be informed, but don’t over do it—Try to capture new information as time goes by, but continuous watching of news coverage can become overwhelming and make your thinking more catastrophic. Try to limit your exposure to the news.
What about my kids—Use this time to teach your children the notion of problem, not crisis, and coping, not avoidance. Remember to teach them to keep to a routine, manage exposure to viruses, washing their hands, and not touching their faces.
Apart We Stand Together