UPDATED Message Regarding Coronavirus (COVID -19), 3/20/2020
Dear Friends and Family of Virginia Eyecare Center,
We last updated you about our COVID-19 policies one week ago, on March 13th. We continue in our commitment to the ongoing care and safety of both our patients and staff. In order to protect all of us and the community at large we are instituting some new guidelines that we must enforce. We ask for your cooperation and understanding as we do so.
Social distancing will be enforced in our waiting areas and our optical.
We are only allowing a total of 8 people in our optical at a time (including staff).
If you are here to pick up glasses or contacts, come into the office. Let our front desk staff know your name and confirm your cell phone number. If we already have the maximum people in our optical, we will ask you to go back to your car. We will text you to meet us curbside to pick up your delivery or we will text you when you may come into our optical to work with an optician. We apologize for any extra waiting this may cause you but we hope you will agree it is the right thing to do.
We are allowing no more than 10 people total in the main waiting area downstairs (including staff), and no more than 10 people total in the waiting area upstairs, including staff.
OFFICE HOURS CHANGES
As of next Monday, March 23rd, in compliance with the recommendations of the CDC, Virginia Eyecare Center will be reducing clinic hours. This reduced clinic schedule is in effect through at least April 3, 2020. We will be open Monday – Friday 8:30am – 4:00pm and will be closed on Saturdays starting Saturday, March 28th. We will be calling to reschedule our patients today.
As of Monday, March 23rd, we will have less doctors and staff working each day. This will, in turn, reduce the number of all people in the office as we encourage appropriate social distancing.
CONTACT LENS PATIENTS
Effective immediately, we will begin Direct Shipping of all Contact Lens supplies. We have worked with our suppliers to get you free shipping for 2 boxes or more of contact lenses.
Just like medical prescriptions, we are encouraging you to order an additional supply of contacts because of the unknowns. Currently, most contacts are still available, but we do not know how much longer manufacturers and other suppliers will remain open. Therefore, we will approve most requests for more contact lenses.
If someone is feeling sick and wears contact lenses, we strongly encourage switching to glasses in order to minimize touching of the face/eyes.
PATIENTS WHO ALREADY HAVE APPOINTMENTS
We recommend that patients who are at higher risk per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reschedule their annual comprehensive eye examinations for after April 20th. The higher risk people include:
- adults 65YO and older
- immunocompromised people
- those who have serious underlying medical conditions like: heart disease, diabetes and lung disease reschedule their annual comprehensive eye examinations for after April 20th.
All patients who are ill – please reschedule and do NOT come in at all until you are well – at least 2 weeks without a fever or cough.
If you are in this high-risk group but have an ocular emergency, please call us and we will help determine if your issue must be addressed right away or can wait. If you need to be seen urgently, we may plan to do so after hours to maximize your safety, but rest assured that we will serve our patients with emergencies who need us.
PEOPLE CALLING THE OFFICE FOR APPOINTMENTS
We will prioritize patients with true eye emergencies. We will be triaging over the phone. Please be patient as we will do our very best to see you promptly.
For all patients, we kindly ask that you do not bring extra people with you as you come to the office. This will further limit the number of people in the office at one time and allow us to continue to practice appropriate social distancing for the well-being of all of us.
In closing, we will continue to implement the protocols that were sent in our previous message to you. We hope and pray that all of you stay healthy during this time and that this virus is contained quickly.
The Doctors and Staff of Virginia Eyecare Center