Thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us delayed medical care. If you’ve delayed seeing your doctor, don’t wait any longer to take care of your health.
Early on in the pandemic, it was often hard to get non-urgent medical care. Medical offices were overloaded. And many patients feared Covid-19 exposure. Lots of people neglected their health.
One study found that 41% of its respondents had gone without medical care between March and July of 2020. During the height of the pandemic in May 2020, researchers found that preventative cancer screenings dropped between 86% and 94% compared to equivalent weeks from 2017 and 2019, respectively.
Especially for people who are immuno-compromised, or who live with someone who is, visiting public spaces may still seem risky. It makes sense that you’d want to avoid visiting places such as a doctor’s office. But at a certain point, NOT going to the doctor may put your own health at risk.
While millions of Americans took advantage of telehealth appointments — using our phones, tablets, or computers — it is not the same as being seen and examined in person. As such, many of us have fallen behind in the care we need.
Now, with available vaccines and Covid-19 treatments, it is time to get back to the doctor’s office and take care of your health.
Signs That You Should Schedule an Appointment
- You have one or more conditions being monitored, like heart or blood pressure issues, or blood sugar (diabetes), or digestive, or any combination of life-altering conditions or diseases.
- You have a family member who has been diagnosed (recently or long ago) with a life-altering disease or condition and you need to be vigilant about for yourself.
- You have been hospitalized or treated for something chronic in the past few years.
- You have a disability and usually see your doctor on a regular basis.
- You have missed any treatments in the past year.
- You have had any lingering or unusual symptoms.
- You were due for a regular test like a mammogram or colonoscopy, but put it off.
- You caught Covid-19 and haven’t been back to your doctor to check your health since you recovered.
- You had mental health-related symptoms or problems, new or ongoing, like depression. Or you’ve noted tendencies that crept up on you like addictions or dependencies.
- … or any other reason you need a healthcare professional to assess and review your physical or mental health situation.
If you feel overwhelmed by the thought of catching up on your medical care, or you’re not sure what you need to do, start with a single step. Schedule a visit with your primary care provider.
If your needs are more complicated and you don’t feel you can manage them on your own, consider reaching out to a professional advocate or care manager for help. You can search our directory for advocates. Read more about how to choose an advocate here.
Remember, you don’t need to navigate your healthcare alone.
Learn more about AdvoConnection and The Alliance of Professional Health Advocates