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Dear CityMD Patient



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 Дата: 28.04.2020 07:48

CityMD

Dear CityMD Patient, 

It’s been a couple of weeks since our last message and we hope that you are safe, healthy, and keeping your spirits up as best you can in this socially-distanced world. We know there’s a lot of heartache and stress out there but we believe New York and New Jersey are on the way back. While it never got as bad as we all feared it might, this pandemic was still terrible, and remains so for many people. And if your home is like ours, nerves are a little frayed, we’re tired of beans, and we would really, really like to get the kids back to school.  

 

Here’s some good news: after week upon endless week of very limited testing for COVID-19, we are finally able at CityMD to offer testing to any patient who needs it. Please take the time to read the following to understand the options that are available and understand that you must see a CityMD provider in order to be tested. 

  • If you have symptoms and would like to see a provider, you may receive a nasal swab test. This molecular test will confirm with a high degree of accuracy whether you have the virus. The results will take 3-5 days during which you must self-quarantine. We will contact you with a positive result by phone; negative results will be sent by email through our patient portal.  

  • If you had symptoms but have recovered and you need a negative test result to return to work, you may come into CityMD for the nasal swab test, as well. This test ONLY indicates whether you are POSITIVE or NEGATIVE for the virus AT THE TIME OF THE TEST. Subject to your employer’s guidelines, you may be able to return to work at this time.  

Here’s the next scenario, where it gets a little tricky: 

  • As of April 28, we can offer an antibody blood test which will indicate with high accuracy if you had the virus in the past whether or not you experienced symptoms. This test detects the “IgG” antibodies which indicate that you had the virus in the past.  

  • If you did have symptoms (fever, aches, persistent cough, loss of senses of smell and taste), you should wait 2-4 weeks after the end of symptoms to get the antibody test because it can take that long for the body to produce IgG antibodies. This antibody test is nearly 100% accurate when used more than 14 days after the end of symptoms, which is why the timing is important.  

  • Please be aware there is substantial evidence that people may have been infected without ever being symptomatic. Depending on the timing of the infection, the blood test will also detect the IgG antibodies in this population. Patients who believe they were exposed and want to be tested should discuss their situation with a CityMD provider.  

  • All antibody test results will be communicated 3-5 days after testing, if not sooner.  

  • You may have read or heard that the antibody test may provide evidence of future immunity. This is often the case with viruses but the science is not yet clear on this particular virus. At this point, these tests will indicate only that you did or did not have the virus in the past. 

Because the nasal swab molecular test was so limited for most of the pandemic, many people who were moderately symptomatic could not be tested. The antibody test will inform you with a high degree of confidence that you did or did not have the virus in the past. While these tests have been approved by the FDA, we must stress that, like flu, strep, and many other widely used diagnostic tests, they are not 100% accurate. We hope that the widespread availability of testing at CityMD will not only alleviate some of your stress, but also will help to contain the future spread of the virus.  

For more information regarding CityMD COVID-19 testing, please visit our COVID-19 testing FAQ.

As noted at the top of the letter, we believe we are on our way back. CityMD has reopened several of our temporarily closed sites in Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, Staten Island, and New Jersey. We now offer this comprehensive testing capability as well as our regular suite of urgent care services in nearly 120 locations across the entire region. Whether it’s a sore throat, seasonal allergies, an ankle sprain or other injury, we are there for you and we hope you will come see us.  

This has been an extraordinary period for everyone. Not least of which because we are all just plain tired of this, it’s only human nature to default to the negative adjectives - scary, tragic, confusing, devastating, maddening - and the 24-hour news coverage doesn’t really help that much. We hope you can focus instead on the abundant positives in our immediate world: the heroism, the compassion, the generosity, and the kindness that so many have you have brought to strangers and loved ones alike over this dark period. It’s those conspicuous traits and behaviors that have gotten us this far, and they’re what will get us truly to the other side of this crisis. 

Be safe, and be well


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