While the holiday COVID-19 boom was not as devastating as many experts predicted, the U.S. is still fighting a "tripledemic" of the flu, respiratory syncytial virus and COVID-19. According to a Jan. 13 article on the American Medical Association website, there are five things physicians can do at their practices to mitigate the threat.
1. Stay informed about surveillance best practices and keep the CDC in the loop. Consult city health departments and provide them with data. Physicians should stay up to date in conversations with networks and health systems.
2. Continue to maintain mask wearing and vaccination protocols. The CDC still recommends masking for infection control, and physicians should ask patients and family members to mask inside their practices.
3. Precautions should be different depending on the virus. Physicians should make informed decisions based on if a patient has a suspected case of RSV, the flu or COVID-19.
4. Environmental hygiene should not be overlooked. Stay diligent on daily cleaning and disinfecting in healthcare spaces.
5. Continue to practice crowd control. Remember the value of remote care, and try to keep waiting rooms limited in capacity. Continue having patients wait outside or stagger appointment times.