Brooklyn Park Medical Practice Takes Coronavirus Precautions
Realief Neuropathy Clinic in Brooklyn Park is treating patients, and taking extra efforts to protect themselves and their patients from COVID-19.
Neuropathy is a degenerative nerve disease affecting more than 20 million Americans. It most often leaves its victims with the inability to have any feeling or sensation in their extremities. As the disease progresses, it can be increasingly difficult to walk. Many people with the disease are told that they can ultimately expect to end up in a wheel chair. There is no cure. But, there are treatments which can slow the disease progression and, if followed up, allow the body to reestablish some nerve function in affected areas.
The Realief Neuropathy Clinic in Brooklyn Park is a regional treatment center for neuropathy. They use a course of treatment involving lasers to bring relief to patients. The next closest Realief Center is in Madison. Doctor Timothy Kelm and his staff treat patients from all over the area. So far, they have remained open and continue to help patients.
“Our practice, like many businesses in Minnesota, is basically focused on self preservation at this point and survival,” said Dr. Kelm. “So taking measures to protect the public not only from the coronavirus, but also making sure that we have a business that will stay in tact for our employees to come back to. Once this stuff is resolved.”
Going Overboard on Safety
The clinic is also spending time “going overboard” on cleaning and safety precautions. Staff are wearing masks and gloves to administer all treatments. Any staff who have traveled are staying out of the office.
“We would rather go overboard than not do enough. So every surface that anybody would contact is sterilized in between every single patient,” said Dr. Kelm. “We’re including including the doors to come in and out of the building itself. Any patients that have any sort of temperature or have even traveled anywhere we’re asking them to reschedule. If anybody is going to get sick, they’re not going to get it here. We’d rather go overboard with the protection.”
Kelm also says many neuropathy patients are older and have canceled appointments out of caution.
The clinic has already had to downsize some staff, and hopes not to do any more.
Which Medical Procedures Are Allowed During COVID-19 Outbreak?
“It would depend on what is considered essential and non-essential. We are in healthcare and if patients don’t see us their condition deteriorates,” said Kelm. “So I think it’s not so much is it elective, is it non-elective. There’s a lot of grey area in that as well. We’re going to try to stay open unless there is some risk to the public or unless that gets defined a little bit more. So that’s still up in the air. We will of course obey executive orders and things like that. We would love to stay open for our patients.”
The neuropathy patients of Realief Neuropathy Clinic in Brooklyn Park may consider their treatments essential. Without them, their disease will continue to erode their mobility. The question is, will the government consider the treatments essential? And can the clinic sustain in the face of an enforced stay at home mandate.
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