Your health is our top priority, and we appreciate the trust you place in us. As the number of cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) increases in the U.S. and Minnesota, we’re working hard to prevent the spread of the virus and to protect our patients and community. To stay healthy, it’s important to stay informed.

 

What if I think I might have COVID-19?

If you’re experiencing fever, cough, shortness of breath symptoms and think you’ve been exposed to COVID-19, staying home and in isolation is the best way to protect yourself and others from exposure.

 

If you are sick

If you are sick, stay home until:

  • At least 3 days (72 hours) have passed since resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications, AND
  • Improvement in respiratory symptoms (e.g., cough, shortness of breath); AND
  • At least 7 days have passed since symptoms first appeared

If you have additional concerns, call us at the Indian Health Board (IHB) before coming in.

 

If you need care

If you have questions or concerns about your medical care, you can call 612-721-9800 and ask to speak to the nurse. The nurse will help answer your questions and may recommend a telehealth visit with your IHB primary care clinician. During the telehealth visit, your primary care clinician will review your symptoms with you, answer your questions and provide advice as needed.

If you have questions or concerns about your dental care, please call 612-721-9800 and ask to speak with a dental assistant. The dental assistant will help answer your questions and recommend whether you should come in for emergency dental care treatment.

 

How to protect yourself

Staying home and in isolation is the best way to protect yourself and others from exposure to COVID-19. Unless you are experiencing severe symptoms such as increasing shortness of breath, you should treat yourself with rest, lots of fluids, and Tylenol for fever or muscle aches.

 

I don’t think I have COVID-19, but wish to make an appointment, should I still plan to visit my clinic?

IHB, in collaboration with other Minnesota health care organizations and government agencies, has decided to delay some routine medical visits; we are offering alternative visits by phone or telehealth during the COVID-19 outbreak for the safety and care of our patients. If you have further questions or concerns, you can call or schedule a telephone visit with your primary care clinician. Our staff can review your symptoms with you, answer your questions and give you more advice as needed.

The Dental Clinic will only see patients for emergency dental care treatment. Again, ask to speak with our dental assistant for recommendations. 

IHB’s Counseling Center, formerly the Counseling & Support Clinic, will schedule telehealth appointments at 612-721-9845. If you have an existing appointment, we’ll call you and help you reschedule for a telehealth visit.

 

Have visitor guidelines changed for the clinic?

No visitors are currently allowed, with the following exception:

  • For newborn, special care nursery and pediatric patients: One parent or one legal guardian can accompany the patient

All visitors will be screened for COVID-19 symptoms. If you are sick with COVID-19 symptoms, we will reschedule your appointment for when you are well. 

 

What is COVID-19?

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses. They are estimated to cause about a third of all cases of the common cold. COVID-19 is a viral respiratory illness caused by a new coronavirus that previously had not been found in people.

 

What are the symptoms?

People with confirmed COVID-19 have had mild to severe respiratory illness with symptoms of:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath

The incubation period, or the time between when people are infected and start showing symptoms, appears to be 2-14 days.

Because COVID-19 symptoms are similar to other illnesses like influenza, having these symptoms does not mean you have COVID-19.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I avoid getting sick?

To prevent the spread of COVID-19, take the same precautions that are recommended for avoiding other illnesses:

  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds before eating, after using the restroom or after blowing your nose. Find out more about proper handwashing. If you can’t wash your hands, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains 60-95% alcohol.
  • Try to avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes.
  • Stay home when you’re feeling sick.
  • Avoid close contact with those who are sick.
  • Regularly clean and disinfect commonly touched surfaces in your home and workplace.
  • Practice social distancing to avoid contact with potential asymptomatic people

 

Where can I learn more about COVID-19?

For the latest updates on COVID-19, go to:

Indian Health Board is following these two organizations’ prevention, screening and treatment guidelines. We are working closely with these organizations and other health care providers around Minnesota and the country to help prevent the virus from spreading.

 

Are you still holding community events and classes?

As the number of cases of COVID-19 continues to increase, we’re looking at the steps we can take to help minimize the risk of exposure in our community. Social distancing is one way to prevent the spread of the virus.

After careful review, we’ve decided to cancel or reformat several types of nonessential gatherings until we revisit the situation on April 10, 2020.

Canceled until reviewed:

  • Women’s Health days, Wellness class: Living with diabetes, Aftercore, and Bingo
  • Ongoing group therapy
  • Community events (like healthy moms and babies, wellness fairs, and annual open houses)

Formatted for online groups:

  • Strong Men Strong Communities
  • Elders Yoga
  • Hand drumming and singing
  • Health and Cultural Connections

We apologize for any inconvenience these cancellations or changes cause for you and your family. If you’ve already signed up or registered for events or classes, we may be contacting you with further information.

If you have questions about your specific event or class, please contact the organizer.

 

Is it safe to travel?

We ask that if you should need to travel, please follow the recommendations set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and to practice use of health precautions recommended for your travel destinations.

Travelers should follow routine precautions:

  • Avoid close contact with those who are sick.
  • Try to avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth, especially with unwashed hands.
  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds before eating, after using the restroom or after blowing your nose. Find out more about proper handwashing
  • If you can’t wash your hands, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains 60-95% alcohol.

 

What if I recently traveled somewhere affected by COVID-19 and got sick?

According to the CDC, if you were in a country affected by a COVID-19 outbreak and you developed fever, cough or shortness of breath within 14 days of leaving, you should:

  • Call us and tell our nurses about your recent travel and symptoms.
  • Avoid contact with others.
  • Do not use public transportation.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes.
  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds before eating, after using the restroom or after blowing your nose. Find out more about proper handwashing. If you can’t wash your hands, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains 60-95% alcohol.

CDC does not generally issue advisories or restrictions for travel within the United States. However, cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) have been reported in all states, and some areas are experiencing community spread of the disease. Crowded travel settings, like airports, may increase chances of getting COVID-19, if there are other travelers with coronavirus infection. There are several things you should consider when deciding whether it is safe for you to travel.

  • Domestic Travel Advisory for New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut

 

When can people return to work if they have traveled somewhere affected by COVID-19?

Currently, all travelers arriving in the United States after leaving a country with a COVID-19 Warning Level 3 CDC notice in the past 14 days are being asked to take additional precautions. These include staying home, practicing social distancing and monitoring their health for at least 14 days. Travelers may be screened for COVID-19 symptoms or exposure.

Regardless of travel history, sick employees should stay home whenever possible.

To help prevent the spread of the virus, the CDC currently recommends that employees with symptoms of respiratory illness don’t return to work for at least seven days until they have been free from fever or other symptoms – without the use of medication – for at least 3 days.

The CDC website contains more information on COVID-19 guidance for businesses and employers.

 

Will the flu vaccine prevent COVID-19?

The flu vaccine won’t prevent or reduce the severity of COVID-19. However, we recommend that everyone still get an annual flu shot to protect against influenza.