Coronavirus is on all of our minds now.

While there are just a few known cases in New England so far, it is likely that coronavirus will be spreading. The symptoms appear to be very vague with fever, cough, and shortness of breath (when not coughing) the predominant ones. So far, approximately 80% of cases present similar to a common cold.

As of now, pediatric patients seem to be the most mildly affected with no deaths occurring in children.

We are finalizing our office protocols and will continue working closely with the Mass Department of Public Health. As of now, we do not have access to coronavirus testing (even at local hospitals they have to be sent to the state and approved by the State Epidemiologist) – mildly-ill patients should not come into the office to be evaluated for coronavirus!

If you have been to China or another area with a cluster of confirmed cases in the last 14 days, and are sick, please call us to inform us but do not come to the office unless instructed.

We would like to remind you that, at this point, influenza is much more prevalent and concerning. Consider getting your children and yourselves flu shots if you have not yet done so.

Coronavirus is likely to be a moving target and our advice will likely be changing frequently. We will continue to keep you updated as best we can.

Thank you for trusting us with the care of your children.

All of Us at Westwood-Mansfield Pediatric Associates

Prevention
Here are simple, preventative steps recommended by the Center for Disease Control (CDC):

  • Wash your hands with hot, soapy water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, mouth, and nose.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using household cleaning sprays or a wipe.
  • Avoid touching frequently-used public objects with your hands like elevator buttons, doorknobs, and public transportation handles.  
  • Get a flu shot, not because it will prevent the spread of COVID-19, but so that you stay healthy and out of the hospital.