My staff and I are vaccinated and fully boosted against Covid-19, to protect you and all of us.
We continue with all measures in our office to mitigate the spread of Covid-19, including mask use.
The Covid strains now circulating (mostly XBB.1.5, and some BQ.1.1) are “off-spring” of prior Omicron strains. The new Covid bivalent (2 strain) booster will protect against these new strains. If you have not had a booster in more than 6 months, or if you have had Covid recently, but more than 2-3 months ago, your immunity is not optimal, and you are at higher risk. Therefore, we recommend that you get a Covid bivalent booster.
Vaccinations and Boosters
As of September 2022, a new Covid vaccine is available. This vaccine booster is "bivalent." That is, it contains both the original Covid-19 strain and the Omicron BA.5 strain.
Here are 2 good articles, by epidemiologist Dr. Katelyn Jetelina, about the new booster.
- Science behind the new booster, and recommendations: CLICK HERE
"Everyone aged 12+ years old should get a booster this fall. It is safe. And we are more confident than not that it will be better than the previous vaccine. It will not be the silver bullet, but will no doubt help greatly on an individual and population level through the winter months. Protect yourself and those around you."
- Timing – when to get the new booster, depending on when you had your last vaccination, and whether (and when) you last had a case of Covid-19: CLICK HERE
This article, by scientist Eric Topol, MD, summarizes how the bivalent booster has worked (as of January 2023):
- "Bivalent boosters work well to prevent severe Covid, as manifest by reduction of hospitalizations and deaths."
Where to get a vaccine – ask for the new bivalent booster:
- Vaccines are available at NYS operated sites, NYC Department of Health sites, and NYC Health + Hospital sites.
- Vaccines are available at most pharmacies, including Walgreens/Duane Reade, Rite Aid, and CVS.
- For general information, see the NYC.gov vaccine page (as of 9/5/22, the site has not been updated with information on the new booster).
Information for Patients, Prior To Your Appointment
Please review this updated information, especially in light of the different symptoms associated with the Omicron variants of Covid-19.
When you are in our office you will be required to wear a cloth or paper face mask that covers your mouth and nose at all times, even if you are vaccinated. Masks with an exhalation valve are not acceptable, as they do not protect others from Covid-19. We will provide you with a paper mask, if you need one.
We are still screening all patients for Covid-19, even if you have been vaccinated and boosted, as "breakthrough" cases are common.
Prior to your visit to our office, please answer these 3 questions:
- Do you have a fever? If you are not sure, take your temperature with a thermometer before you leave for your appointment. You have a fever if your temperature is higher than 99.5 F.
- Do you have any symptoms of Covid: headache, runny nose, sore throat, sneezing, persistent cough, fever, chills, loss of sense of taste or smell?
- In the last 10 days, has anyone in your household (or any person who you have been in close contact with) tested positive for Covid, or developed symptoms of Covid?
If the answers are all "no" you do not need to inform us.
If the answer to ANY question is “yes” then you should not come in for your appointment.
In such case, please contact us.
Information on home (rapid, antigen) tests for Covid:
- If you do NOT have Covid symptoms, but want to be sure you are not carrying the virus after an exposure:
- Two home tests, 48 hours apart, detect ONLY 63 percent of infections.
- Three home tests, each 48 hours apart, detect 79 percent of infections.
- That’s better, but still not so great. If you want to be sure that you are negative, you’ll need to get a lab (PCR) test.
- If you have Covid symptoms, two home tests, 48 hours apart, detect 93 percent of infections.
Reference: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/35982680/ (August 6, 2022; not yet peer reviewed)
Covid-19 in NYC
The New York City Health Commissioner advises all New Yorkers to wear a high-quality mask in all public indoor settings and around crowds outside.
You can read the latest recommendations on the NYC Department of Health website: CLICK HERE.
Exposed to Covid-19? How To Quarantine – Who Should Quarantine
The NY State Department of Health has issued updated guidance (on May 31, 2022) regarding what you should do if you are exposed to Covid-19 or if you have symptoms.
To read the PDF , CLICK HERE.