Healthy Eyes 101

Ep. 008: Is It Safe to Get Your Eyes Examined During the COVID-19 Pandemic? - with Laura Kunze, MBA, COE

June 07, 2020 Steven Suh, MD Episode 8
Healthy Eyes 101
Ep. 008: Is It Safe to Get Your Eyes Examined During the COVID-19 Pandemic? - with Laura Kunze, MBA, COE
Show Notes

On this special episode, Dr. Steven Suh and practice administrator, Laura Kunze, discuss the new procedures and protocols to ensure patient safety during their eye exam to minimize the risk of potentially spreading the coronavirus during this historic pandemic. 

Please understand that this episode came out in early June of 2020 so these rules may have changed by the time you have listened to this. 

Before the day of the appointment, we are pre-screening patients by asking them if they have had a sore throat, fever, fatigue, loss of smell or respiratory symptoms. 

On the day of their appointment, we will check their temperature to make sure that they do not have a fever. If they do, they will be asked to re-schedule. Wearing masks are mandatory from the time they walk into the office until they leave. All doctors and staff are to wear their masks full-time as well. We ask that family members stay in their cars unless there is a need for them to accompany the patient. In the waiting room, we have placed chairs six feet apart. We are wiping down these chairs with disinfecting wipes on a regular basis. 

After a patient has been in an exam or special testing room, that room is also wiped down from the chairs to the equipment, computers, and countertops. Even though we have limited the number of patient visits per day, the promptness of their appointment times may be more unpredictable because of the extra cleaning time.  

Those at risk for getting seriously ill from the coronavirus may put off their appointment for their routine eye check-ups. Well-controlled glaucoma patients can generally push their appointments out one to three months, but please call if you need refills on your glaucoma drops.

If you have a new onset of symptoms such as eye pain, loss of vision, or flashes/floaters, please call for an urgent appointment. If you have a corneal infections or abrasions, an active inflammation (iritis/uveitis), diabetic retinopathy, please try to keep your regularly scheduled appointment. Those who get medications injected into their eye for wet macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, macular edema, or other retinal condition, please keep these appointments.  

Telemedicine may be helpful for triaging for an appointment, but many conditions cannot be properly diagnosed without an actual examination with our special equipment. 

Laser procedures and minor surgeries in the office should not be an issue either since everyone will be wearing a mask and cleaning protocols will be followed. Looking for glasses or getting your frames adjusted in our optical shop should not any different from before. Please do not put frames back on the boards so that we may clean them properly before the next patient tries them on.

Elective procedures such as cataract surgery in a surgery center or hospital should also be fine. They will most likely adhere to more stringent requirements including requiring coronavirus testing pre-operatively if you have had exposure to someone with COVID-19 or work in a place like a hospital where one may be exposed to people who may have the virus.

Here is another article on this topic.

To find out more about Ms. Kunze's and Dr.Suh's practice, go to Comprehensive EyeCare of Central Ohio’s website or Facebook page.

This is intended for informational and educational purposes only, and nothing in this podcast/blog is to be considered as recommending or rendering medical advice or treatment to a specific patient. Please consult your eye care specialist for proper diagnosis and treatment of any eye conditions that you may have.