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Several coming in with serious health conditions after putting off doctor’s visits

Published: Dec. 30, 2020 at 5:12 PM CST
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FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) -

Health experts are warning you to start booking appointments now. Sanford and Essentia say they’ve seen an uptick in people coming in with serious health conditions after putting off doctor’s visits throughout the pandemic.

“If you need care now, please don’t wait on it come in before it’s too late,” said Dr. Avish Nagpal, Sanford Infectious Disease and Medical Director of Infection Prevention and Control.

Nagpal said now more than ever, health care providers are playing catch up as more people come in with serious health conditions after putting off visits due to COVID-19. He said it created a domino effect adding people would’ve had a better outcome if they had come in sooner.

“There were more complications that they had to deal with,” said Nagpal. “When they decided not to go for surgery at that particular time or not come in for their routine checks, it got postponed, and by the time they were ready to come in, we had another surge.”

Nagpal said the risks of continuing to put off your care is much worse than the risks you’re taking coming into the hospital or clinic. He said they are taking many precautions to make sure you feel safe.

Essentia Hospital told us patients and providers must wear a mask that covers their mouth and nose at all times, they have markers on the floor to help with social distancing and they are spacing out people in waiting rooms.

“If you are waiting for the vaccine, that should not be a reason to postpone the care,” said Nagpal.

Nagpal said he’s especially concerned about those with a mild cough, bladder infection or diabetes. He said because case numbers are down, now’s the time to come in for a visit before there’s another COVID surge after the holidays.

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