Hey Medicare Nation!
We’re smack in the middle of a Corona Virus Pandemic!
I wanted to give you an episode that is full of USEFUL information. I know you’ve been hammered by the news, internet and newspapers about the Corona Virus.
Let’s start with a very important fact:
Human coronaviruses were first identified in the mid-1960s.
The 1960’s people!
the coronavirus gets its name from a distinctive corona or in a scientists world…a “Crown of Sugary Proteins,” that projects from the surface of the virus.
There are four main types of Human Corona Viruses
The first two only infect mammals, including bats, pigs, cats, and humans.
Gammacoronavirus mostly infects birds such as poultry (chickens) and Deltacoronavirus can infect both birds and mammals.
Do you recognize the virus named SARS?
Severe acute respiratory syndrome abbreviated as…(SARS-CoV)
SARS-CoV (the beta coronavirus. Guess what it causes? It causes severe… acute…..respiratory syndrome,
SARS was first recognized as a distinct strain of coronavirus in 2002. The source of the virus has never been clear, though the first human infections can be traced back to the Chinese province of Guangdong in November of 2002.
The virus then became a pandemic, causing more than 8,000 infections of an influenza-like disease in 26 countries with close to 800 deaths.
In the United States, only eight persons were laboratory-confirmed as SARS cases. There were NO SARS-related deaths in the United States. All of the eight persons with laboratory-confirmed SARS had traveled to areas where SARS-CoV transmission was occurring.
By July of 2003….. the World Health Organization declared the outbreak over.
On February 11, 2020 the World Health Organization announced an official name for the disease that is causing the 2019 novel coronavirus outbreak, first identified in Wuhan China. The new name of this disease is….SARS-COV-2 aka coronavirus disease 2019, abbreviated as COVID-19. ‘CO’ stands for ‘corona,’ ‘VI’ for ‘virus,’ and ‘D’ for disease.
The Medicare Nation
COVID-19 is a new disease, caused by a novel (or new) “coronavirus” or strain of “Corona Virus” that has not previously been seen in humans.
What are the Symptoms of COVID-19?
The CDC (Centers of Disease Control) have listed these as the most common symptoms of COVID-19:
Shortness of breath
Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure.
Reported illnesses have ranged from mild symptoms….like a dry cough….
to severe illness, with high fever and shortness of breath, requiring hospitalization and there have been deaths reported for confirmed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases.
Currently, according to the WHO…as of March 13th….there are over 132, 758 reported cases of COVID-19 …. Worldwide.
Of those cases….. there are 4,955 Deaths worldwide.
Over 80% of the reported cases are recovering.
In the U.S…… there are currently 1,629 reported cases…… in 47 of the 50 States.
No reported cases yet….in Idaho, Alabama and West Virginia.
There have been 41 Deaths reported in the U.S. ….. with 37 Deaths coming from the State of Washington. The deaths mainly being reported from a nursing facility, with those being elderly and having underlying medical conditions prior to contracting the CoronaVirus.
What do we mean by Underlying medical conditions????
If you have a blood disorder…. like sickle cell disease… or … you have chronic kidney disease…. you’re currently receiving chemotherapy or radiation. You may have congestive heart failure or coronary artery disease.
You may have chronic asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or you may need oxygen at home.
All of these conditions….. as well as many more….. may raise your risk of contracting COVID-19. You may NOT contract the virus. Just be more cognizant of your surroundings and who you are in contact with.
What do you do if you believe you have symptoms of the COVID-19?
- NUMBER 1…. Call your Primary Doctor. Speak with the Nurse or Physician’s Assistant. Tell them your symptoms and they will advise you of what to do.
IF You CANT get Through to your Doctor…….
- If you have a Medicare Advantage Plan…… the Plan most likely has a 24 hr. Nurse’s Line. CALL THEM!! Tell the nurse about your symptoms. They will advise you.
- Call your STATE Health Department for advice. Each State has an information line dedicated to the COVID-19 Crisis and will be able to assist you with answering questions.
- If you have any severe symptoms….. as in Difficulty Breathing, fluid in your lungs, High fever of over 104 degrees…. CALL 911!
If you do have symptoms, and your doctor wants you to have the test to confirm COVID-19…. Where do you go??
According to the FDA….. here is the current list of laboratories across the U.S. that will be offering testing for the COVID-19 very soon
Advent Health Laboratories
As well as many other public health, university and private labs will be available on the FDA list of laboratories to test for the COVID-19.
Medicare IS Covering the Test for COVID-19 as a Preventative Diagnostic Test….and therefore ….. you will have NO COPAY when you take the test.
There are currently TWO Testing Codes for the COVID-19 Test
Is for having the Test at a Public Health Lab ( your local community Health Department) which is U0001
The 2nd is for having the test at a commercial or private lab (like Lab Corp) which is U0002.
If you are diagnosed with COVID-19, self-quarantine yourself in your home, away from your family members and pets, until you have tested negative.
We ALL need to SELF-Police ourselves and HELP STOP the Spread of COVID-19….. so we can curtail the spread and help stop the pandemic.
Remember to Drink lots of fluids….. eat plenty of chicken soup and crackers ….. and get lots of REST!!
The Medicare Nation
You can go to the Center for Disease Control website for daily updates on the Corona Virus 19 situation ….. go to….. www.CDC.gov
You can also go to the World Health Organization website…. Go to …. www.who.int
AND…. PLEASE go to your STATE”S Health Department website for local information by “Googling” your State.
That’s all for today Nation. Call your Parents….. Make sure they’re ok and help them subscribe to Medicare Nation…. So they can hear this episode as well as over 100 other episodes about Medicare and it’s Resources.
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