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Stay Calm and Les Miserables

I just finished my 3rd Zoom call/webinar today. 2 were to find out the state of our area from the leaders at Accountable Health Partners of UR Med and the state of the state from Governor Cuomo. With the sun shining, a traffic noise so reduced when we walked Harper this morning, I had a hard time wrapping my head around the news of the spread of COVID-19. It just was too calm. However, hearing the numbers of new cases, hospitalizations and deaths from the virus is very sobering. Locally, 10.26% of patients who are ill enough to test for COVID-19 have positive tests. This number keeps rising. Nationally 18.15% are positive, while 37.9% of those in NY are positive. All 3 numbers are rising – partly because labs are clearing a backlog of tests, but also because we are still on the upswing of what is referred to as the “surge.”  The predictive models suggest that the peak of virus will not hit for 3-4  more weeks. UGH!!!!

The most important thing we can do is to physically isolate.  Physical/social distancing will work and although there will still be a surge, distancing will hopefully flatten it.

In the meantime, as we move into April and start to see more sunshine and warmer temperatures, let’s take advantage and go for “socially distanced” walks, let the kids play (at a distance). We have enjoyed the chalk aret in our neighbor hood. 

And for your viewing pleasure, some very clever parents provide a family music lesson.  Les Mis Lock Down

 

Stay Calm – We are Still Here

As we get further into the COVID-19 pandemic, I find myself looking for something different to report. Today is much of the same news and statistics.  In Monroe County, the percent positive cases continues to trickle upwards. As of today 8.87% of tests were positive. That still means that over 91% of those ill enough to warrant testing were negative for COVID-19.  In NY State 35.66% of tests were positive, but nationwide 16.95% of tests were positive. As Governor Cuomo keeps reminding us, the epicenter of COVID-19 remains NY city and downstate.  We need to continue to continue to stay at home to flatten the curve.  

Locally, our hospital systems are gearing up and are prepared for rising numbers. Various models and predictions are being monitored, but it appears that the number of cases is going to increase before we actually see the peak of the pandemic locally. Please continue to take precautions.

Please check out the attached article:

Home is Not School_ Quarantine with Kids – Elizabeth Pantley – The No-Cry Solution

We are still here if you need us, please do not hesitate to contact us. 

Stay Calm and Enjoy Time With Your Family

As we enter the 3rd week of COVID-19 shut downs, we at Lewis Pediatrics remain open and available if you need us.

I think we all need to take a moment and count all the  positive changes that the “shutdown” has brought. As Mrs. Lewis, Harper and I walked around our neighborhood for the 3rd time on Saturday, we noticed that more of our neighbors, some of whom we had never seen before were out and walking. There were times when an air traffic controller was necessary as couples, children on bikes and scooters and dogs needed to pause to maintain an acceptable “social distance. Many people who typically would walk on with earbuds in, not acknowledging anyone else, paused to say hello and ask how we were doing.  

Mrs. Lewis has a maxim that we need to get rid of 3 things a week that we no longer need or use.  This weekend we probably cleaned a year’s worth of those items as we tackled a few corners of our basement. 

We FaceTimed with our grandson and read books to him. We FaceTimed with our granddaughter who read books to us. We Zoomed with friends in virtual social hours. 

Life has certainly changed, but it does go on. 

And, from one of my many briefings about COVID-19, 

“For the First Time in A While, I’m Actually Not Scared …” Dr. David Price Provides Empowering Advice for Staying Safe and Protecting Our Families

“I Actually Know Now That I Won’t Get This Disease”
On March 22, Dr. David R. Price—a critical care physician on the front lines of treating COVID-19 patients at New York’s Cornell-Weill Medical Center—conducted a Zoom call about the disease with friends and family members around the country. In simple terms, he provides basic facts about the disease and what people can do to stay safe.

Here’s a link to excerpts of his video:  vimeo.com/401923670

Key points include:

  • The disease spreads through sustained contact with someone who has COVID-19
  • Transmission is almost exclusively from touching hands to face after exposure to droplets
  • Any mask helps to prevent face-touching, so the public doesn’t need surgical masks
  • Dr. Price wears an N95 mask only during procedures such as intubation and extubation
  • COVID-19 patients can avoid infecting family members through isolation within the home
  • About 10% of people who get the disease need hospital care, because they are short of breath, and the large majority of hospitalized patients recover

So, please stay calm. 

Stay Calm and Wash Your Hands

I really don’t have any news that you can’t find from other sources, but did have a fun video sent to me from some friends.


Have a safe weekend. Will continue to update you as things evolve.

 

Stay Calm and Enjoy a Poem

The number of positive tests continues to rise, but as I keep reminding you, is to be expected since we are increasing the number of patients tested. He has of yesterday, Monroe County had processed 1966 tests. Of these, 148 were positive. That means, again, of all the people who were ill enough to qualify for testing only 7.5% were positive. Current recommendations remain in effect. If you have “mild” symptoms of an upper respiratory infection it is best to stay home and self quarantine. If you have high fever, cough and difficulty breathing, a test might be indicated.

The following is a poem that was posted on an American Academy of Pediatrics listserv. I hope it helps to light in your day.

If Dr. Seuss were alive today, he did write something like this:
(Read with Dr. Seuss book rhythm)

The buildings were big and people would smile
And travel they would mild by mile.
But sick they become, in numbers it grew
Businesses worried, communities too.
Things stopped for a bit, the world slowed its roll
The virus is certainly taken its toll.
But what they then saw from slowing things down,
Is in fact they now had less reasons to frown.
Family is now gathered, what game show we play?
Past me the blue crayon, give mommy the grey.
Dad’s home guys! He will read as a book
Then all of us together will cook.
The lungs of the planet caught a small break
Less travel meant less pollution to make.
People did realize they’d will be okay
They do not need so much to get through the day
May be this virus that causes so much stress
Showed the whole world that more can be less.

Written by XXXXXX
Inspired by Dr. Seuss

 

Stay Calm and Do Anything Except Panic

I hope to have today’s numbers later today, but so far I have gotten many more calls about possible exposures to COVID-19.

As of last night, there were 121 confirmed cases in Monroe County with 1756 tests performed. That is a 6.8% positive rate. That means that 93.2% of people who were ill enough to warrant a test do not have COVID-19.  Many more people with mild symptoms are being told to stay home and self quarantine which is very smart.  But, if you are a parent, how do you do that and take care of your children (who if you have symptoms probably already were exposed anyways). Do the best you can.  Chances are you do not have COVID-19 or if you do, it is, like the majority of cases, mild enough to not need testing or even a doctor’s visit. 

Remember we can also connect via Anytime Pediatrics for telemedicne.

But most importantly, do not Panic.

 

Stay Calm and Wash Your Hands

The number of cases continue to rise (again partly because we are testing more). There are so many sources of information that I really don’t have more to add. The American Academy of Pediatrics has produced some very good resources for families and children. www.healthychildren.org

And, thanks to a former family for reaching out…

Keep Calm and Wash Your Hands. 

We continue to be available to help you through the pandemic. 

Stay Calm and 6 Feet Apart

Thanks to former patient Andrew and his parents for this one. And thanks to all of you who have acknowledged my posts. I hope you find them helpful One of the nice “consequences” of the coronavirus pandemic is that I have heard from families of former patients. Some who go back to the very first days of my practice. Thank you all for your good wishes. Stay safe and healthy (as well as calm…)

The American Academy of Pediatrics Advises Parents Experiencing Stress over COVID-19

Academy recommends parents seek help for themselves, and use positive discipline techniques like time outs, redirection and reinforcement of good behaviors

ITASCA, ILL. (March 23, 2020) — The American Academy of Pediatrics today advises parents facing stressors over COVID-19 to practice self-care, to reach out to others for help, and to use healthy discipline techniques, such as time-outs.

The Academy acknowledges the financial, emotional and other stresses that parents face as the number of coronavirus cases rise and many families spend long periods of time isolated at home. Research has found that when families are stressed, children are at an increased risk of being abused.

Caregivers should be sure to take care of themselves physically: eat healthy, exercise, and get enough sleep. Parents and caregivers also should maintain important connections to friends, family, and others in their community who can offer a critical support network by phone or video.

“During this time of understandable anxiety, give back and reach out to other parents when they need support,” said AAP President Sara “Sally” H. Goza, MD, FAAP. “If someone calls you frustrated about a crying baby or screaming toddler, offer to help.

Children may show signs of increased stress, which can lead to more frustration for the entire family, too. Building on the Academy’s updated discipline policy issued last year, the group recommends the following techniques:

  • Engage your children in constructive activities. Bored or frustrated children are more likely to act out. Many children have had their lives disrupted. They are out of school, and they can’t play with their friends.
  •  Help them with their fears. Children who are old enough to follow the news may be afraid, for example, that they or their parents are going to die. You can acknowledge the fear, and discuss all the things you are doing to stay healthy, such as washing hands and staying home to avoid germs. 
  • Call a time-out. This discipline tool works best by warning children they will get a time-out if they don’t stop, reminding them what they did wrong in as few words―and with as little emotion―as possible, and removing them from the situation for a pre-set length of time (1 minute per year of age is a good guide). 
  • Know when not to respond. As long as your child isn’t doing something dangerous and gets plenty of attention for good behavior, ignoring bad behavior can be an effective way of stopping it. Ignoring bad behavior also can teach children natural consequences of their actions. For example, if your child keeps dropping his food on purpose, he soon will have no more crackers left to eat. 
  • Catch them being good. Children need to know when they do something bad—and when they do something good. Notice good behavior and point it out, praising success and good tries. This is particularly important in these difficult times, when children are separated from their friends and usual routines.
  • Give them your attention. The most powerful tool for effective discipline is attention—to reinforce good behaviors and discourage others. Remember, all children want their parent’s attention. When parents are trying to work at home, this can be particularly challenging. Clear communication and setting expectations can help, particularly with older children.

According to the AAP, spanking, hitting, and other forms of corporal punishment can increase aggression in children in the long-run and do not teach children to behave or practice self-control. In fact, research shows it may harm the child and inhibit normal brain development. Corporal punishment may undermine the feeling of safety and security of home, which are particularly needed now.

The Academy also cautions caregivers never to shake or throw a child, which could cause permanent injuries and disabilities and could even result in death. The Academy recently issued an updated policy for pediatricians on identifying, treating and preventing abusive head trauma.

Tips for calming a fussy baby and advice for caregivers who have reached a breaking point can be found here. If you have a friend, relative or neighbor with the new baby at home, think of ways you can reach out to provide emotional support or practical tips, even during the current period of isolation.

“Sadly, about 5 children die every day in America from abuse and neglect,” said Robert Sege, MD, PhD, FAAP, a child abuse pediatrician and member of the AAP Council on Child Abuse and Neglect. “No doubt, we are worried about the financial and emotional stress this pandemic is placing on families, especially the most vulnerable. Call your pediatrician. Call your close friend, relative, or faith leader. Call someone if you fear snapping.”

In addition to reaching out to others for help, the Academy recommends parents facing acute stress try to take just a few seconds to ask themselves:

  • Does the problem represent an immediate danger? 
  • How will I feel about this problem tomorrow?
  • Is this situation permanent? 

In many cases, the answers will deflate the panic and the impulse to lash out physically or verbally at children.

“Positive, nurturing relationships are so important for children as they develop, and parents and caregivers also need support – especially during times of uncertainty and stress like we’re in now,” said Suzanne Haney, MD, FAAP, chair of the AAP Council on Child Abuse and Neglect.  “Everyone can play a role within their own family and in their network of friends and neighbors to support the most vulnerable among us.”

ABOUT THE AAP

The American Academy of Pediatrics is an organization of 67,000 primary care pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists and pediatric surgical specialists dedicated to the health, safety and well-being of infants, children, adolescents and young adults.