Medical appointments are some of the more essential reasons that will see us leaving the house amidst the COVID-19 Circuit Breaker measures. During these appointments, taking extra precautions will go a long way in keeping our loved ones safe.
The simplest way to reduce the risk of you or your loved ones getting COVID-19 is to avoid leaving the house unnecessarily. If at all possible, your best bet is to postpone non-urgent medical appointments to a later date, or opt for tele-consultations if this is available and suitable for your loved one’s needs.
Should you need to refill a prescription, consider asking your doctor or pharmacist if they are able to fill prescriptions for a longer period so as to reduce your trips to the clinic or hospital. Another alternative is to opt for delivery of the necessary medications to your home if this option is available.
Of course, there will be certain medical appointments which must be done in person. For these appointments, leaving the house cannot be avoided, but by taking some extra precautions, can help lower the risk of getting COVID-19.
The first and most important rule is to ensure that you have face masks for your loved one and whoever is accompanying them for their medical appointment. Even if they are not keen, it is now mandatory to wear a mask when leaving your house, so you will need to explain this to them; if they’re more likely to listen to another family member, try getting them to explain why they need to wear a mask. If they’re unable to understand why masks are required, try diverting their attention by giving them a sweet to chew on so you can put the mask on for them.
Remember to bring along your loved one’s NRIC, Pioneer / Merdeka Generation card (if applicable) and a bottle of hand sanitiser. If you’re visiting a General Practitioner, you might also wish to bring along any existing medical information, like a list of their current medications and any relevant medical memos which their doctors have written for them. Once you return home from this medical appointment, make sure that you and your loved one washes your hands thoroughly before going about the rest of your day.
For more information, write to firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Dementia Helpline at 6377 0700, Monday to Friday (9am to 6pm).