Clinics feeling impact of coronavirus crisis

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- As COVID-19 continues to spread across the nation, medical professionals are feeling the impact.

While some clinics change their hours of operation, others are seeing twice as many patients.

Doctor Juan Bautista at North Fresno Primary Care says he's implementing changes.

"If a patient comes in and I really need to see that patient, we have them come through a separate entrance and we're masked, not just us, but we put a mask on them as well."

According to Bautista, it's been difficult acquiring some essential items.

"Some of the precautions, of course, are going to be masks, gloves, but again we are running out of supplies, and that is not just in Fresno, that is nationwide," he says.

Bautista says like many clinics they have a designated room where they check patients with COVID-19 symptoms.

"We have a room that is specialized for this kind of patient that we sanitize more frequently."

Bautista says he's been seeing more patients as an effort to relieve the stress from local ERs.

He's taking in people looking to visit an emergency room in need of urgent assistance.
"If you are short of breath and you have other problems such as diabetes, high blood pressure then definitely give us a call rather than just heading to the ER," he says.

At the moment an increase in patients is putting pressure on ERs.

"Do you need to be here? If it is a blood pressure medication that you are routinely on, we can order that, we can keep you at home. Again we are really trying to take care of our family in the ER here," says Bautista.

During this time, he recommends people keep a balanced diet.

Bautista says some people may be experiencing shortness of breath by eating more processed foods.

"Processed food meaning that has a long shelf life can have a lot of sodium and this sodium people that are very sensitive with blood pressure but also congested heart failure can really cause problems with them."

Bautista says anyone experiencing COVID-19-like symptoms should call their physician to come up with a plan of action.

Above all else, Bautista recommends that people stay informed through the CDC's website, not social media.

He also advises people to follow their guidelines of social distancing and other preventative measures.
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