RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif., Jan. 15, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- With a decline in patients seen by Inland Empire physicians during COVID-19, Inland Empire Health Plan (IEHP) would like to remind all members and community residents about the importance of seeing their primary care physicians for routine and preventive care appointments.
IEHP physicians saw a 30% decrease in primary care visits between March – September 2020 (compared to the same time the year prior), which has been attributed to the COVID-19 pandemic. With so many residents bypassing preventive care visits, many medical professionals are concerned how this might impact the health and wellness of the Inland Empire community once the pandemic subsides.
In a recent interview with Good Day LA's Michaela Pereira, IEHP's Chief Medical Officer Dr. Karen Hansberger offered helpful tips about how to access care, assuring residents of the precautions being taken to ensure their safety. "Your doctor and health care providers are prepared," Dr. Hansberger said. "They have protocols in place to keep you safe if you need to be seen."
"You can also call your doctor," Dr. Hansberger added. "Many of the concerns you may have, like getting prescription refills, can be addressed over the phone and you may have the option for a televisit with your doctor."
During the interview, Dr. Hansberger expressed the importance of prioritizing care. She shared that while some appointments like mammograms can be delayed by a few weeks, they should not be put off for more than six months. "Don't be afraid to access health care," said Dr. Hansberger. "Certainly, if you feel sick, you need to access health care."
If members or residents have questions about seeking medical attention for non-emergency situations, they are encouraged to contact their primary care physician. Residents in need of medical or health benefits can call (866) 294-4347 for enrollment assistance and to be linked to a doctor.
"Your physicians are here and are equipped to support your health and wellness, even during this pandemic," said Dr. Hansberger. "We encourage our members and community residents continue to access the care they need, when they need it so that we can all continue to stive to enjoy optimal care and vibrant health."
For more information on telehealth visit iehp.org.
IEHP, Inland Empire Health Plan, is one of the top 10 largest Medicaid health plans and the largest not-for-profit Medicare-Medicaid plan in the country. With a network of more than 6,400 Providers and more than 2,000 employees, IEHP serves more than 1.3 million residents in Riverside and San Bernardino counties who are enrolled in Medicaid or Cal MediConnect Plan (Medicare-Medicaid Plan). Through a dynamic partnership with Providers and Community, award-winning service and innovative products, IEHP is fully committed to advocating for our Members and providing them with quality, accessible and wellness-based health care services. For more information, visit iehp.org.
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SOURCE Inland Empire Health Plan (IEHP)