By Kelli Grant
Published: November 3, 2009, 6:09 PM
Many of them got the vaccine weeks ago but that isn't stopping doctors from taking extra precaution when it comes to the H1N1 flu. A mask among other things is helping keep the flu away from doctors in KELOLAND.
They're on the front lines in the battle of your health against the H1N1 virus. And your doctor is going to great lengths to protect you and themselves.
Sanford Dr. Paul DeJong has seen his fair share of sick patients this flu season. Yet he hasn't caught the H1N1 bug.
“To be honest, I'm amazed that I haven't gotten it yet. The number of people that we've seen in clinic with the illness. But I did get the vaccine. I got the vaccine a little over two weeks ago just before the big outbreak,” DeJong said.
And the vaccine is what's offering him the most protection. But a good dose of hand sanitizer before and after seeing patients is also killing the virus.
Unfortunately, not everyone he works with has been as lucky.
“We've had a few nurses who have been out sick. I think one doctor in our clinic here and definitely many nurses sick at the hospital. They've been pretty hard put for staff on some of the different floors,” DeJong said.
DeJong says patients wearing masks these days is normal to protect other patients and staff from the virus.
“In the clinic here, we actually ask the patients to wear the mask just because going in and out of so many different rooms it's hard to know which rooms to put on a mask,” DeJong said.
But it's a different story when visiting the hospital.
“We always wear a mask in the hospital. So if we're going into a room of a patient that we know has influenza or we suspect has influenza, then I put on a mask,” DeJong said.
So when you head to the doctor this fall thinking you have the H1N1 flu, it's a safe bet your doctor is doing all they can to not pass it on.
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