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COVID-19 Update!

Our office provides:

Pfizer Pediatric COVID-19 vaccines 5-11 years

Pfizer COVID -19 vaccines for 12 years and older, including adults

Moderna COVID-19 vaccines for 18 years and older

Information on the vaccine for 12 years and older can be found at https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/covid-19/index.html

The CDC now recommends that children between the ages of 5 and 11 years receive the Pfizer-BioTech Pediatric COVID-19 Vaccine. You can get more information and read CDC’s media statement at https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/covid-19/info-by-product/pfizer/index.html

The American Academy of Pediatrics also recommends the COVID-19 vaccination for all children and adolescents 5 years of age and older who do not have contraindications. More information from the AAP can be found at https://www.aap.org/en/pages/covid-19-vaccines-in-children-and-adolescents-policy/

Call 512-900-6055 or send us a portal message through the patient portal at https://15935.portal.athenahealth.com/ to make an appointment to receive the pediatric COVID-19 vaccine.

Please remember these appointments are for vaccine administration only to ensure short wait times for other patients. If you have any concerns about your child, our providers would be happy to see him or her at a regularly scheduled appointment. If you are already scheduled for a visit with a provider we would be happy to offer the Pfizer pediatric COVID-19 vaccine at that time for your child or any siblings present.

If you are interested in a “Drive Through” Vaccination appointment (and it is not raining), please indicate that you prefer to stay in your vehicle when you call to make a nurse visit appointment. When you arrive, please call to notify us when you are in the parking lot. We ask that your child has shorts or a dress on to prevent needing to remove them from their car seat and any clothing covering their upper thigh.

FLU VACCINES WHICH CAN BE ADMINISTERED ON THE SAME DAY AS RECEIVING THE COVID-19 VACCINE

Our staff will be available to provide COVID-19 vaccines:

Tuesday 8:20AM – 4:30PM (Closed for Lunch 12:00-1:00)

Wednesday 8:20AM – 4:30PM (Closed for Lunch 12:00-1:00)

Thursday 8:20AM-4:30PM (Closed for Lunch 12:00-1:00)

Friday 1:20 PM-4:30pm

Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions or feedback you can provide during this process. We are truly honored to care for every family at Wildflower Pediatrics!

COVID-19 PATIENT TESTIING:

At Wildflower Pediatrics, we continue to stay up to date on the latest recommendations on COVID-19 management, treatment, and testing. We are seeing improved accuracy with rapid antigen testing. As a result, we can provide rapid testing (10 minutes) at this time at an office visit but may encourage PCR testing in certain situations.

PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction) tests for COVID-19 are FDA approved and more precise than rapid antigen testing. We are able to swab our patients for this kind of test and send them to an outside lab. The turnaround time for these tests for our practice is usually 1 day. At times it can take 2-3 days to get the results back if there has been a surge in testing and the lab gets back logged which has been rare these days. The costs for rapid and PCR tests are submitted to your insurance and are typically considered a covered cost or may go towards your deductible.

The American Academy of Pediatrics also recommends using PCR tests that have been approved by the FDA. Per the AAP, “Most antigen (rapid) tests that have received a Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendment waiver have limited specificity and sensitivity and should not be used for routine clinical care. In addition, until experts learn more about SARS-CoV-2 antibodies, antibody testing is not routinely recommended and should not be used to make decisions about grouping people in classrooms or other facilities.”

We hope this information helps clarify the ongoing confusion regarding COVID-19 testing. We want to provide the best care possible when it comes to these issues. We have continued to keep our patients and staff safe during these unprecedented times.

COVID-19 PRACTICE SAFETY MEASURES

PLEASE understand that we are the front line for protecting your child (children) against COVID-19. We want all of our patients to avoid visits to urgent care clinics and hospital emergency rooms where the risk of exposure is much higher. We do not want you to be fearful of coming to our office. We are open Monday-Friday 8 am-4:30 pm and have implemented measures to ensure your family’s safety.

These measures include:

  • Addition of Telemedicine appointments
  • If you are registered with our portal, this is a great way to communicate with a provider or nurse (Instructions to register are on our website)
  • Use of a pager system to allow you to wait in your car if desired until your appointment time begins
  • Use of our back patio
  • Use of an inside isolated patient room without entering through the front door of the clinic
  • Nurses and Providers wearing full protective personal equipment during sick visits
  • Curbside assessments in our parking lot
  • Drive-by vaccines in our parking lot
  • Limited toys available in waiting rooms and patient rooms with consistent sterilization of the clinic

MASK EXEMPTION LETTERS

We hope everyone is staying heathy and having a great start to the school year. We know decisions regarding school and having your children wear masks have been challenging and that everyone is feeling some fatigue with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. There has been an increase in the number of pediatric COVID-19 cases that we are seeing, however, the cases we have seen have continued to present with mild symptoms overall. We are continuing to offer the COVID-19 vaccine to eligible individuals and are happy to provide guidance if you have concerns about your child’s symptoms or an exposure.

With children returning to school and other normal activities, we wanted to remind everyone of the importance of wearing masks in these settings to help control the spread of this illness. Wearing masks indoors is a recommendation supported by both the CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention) and the AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics) and there is good data that shows wearing masks does slow the spread of this virus. In order to keep our kids in school, we also completely support the recommendation that children over 2 years of age wear masks while in indoor settings.

We will not be providing mask exemptions letters unless one of the following conditions are present:

-Children under 2 years old or those that cannot remove masks themselves

-Facial deformities that cause airway obstruction

-Significant behavioral or mental health issues that are exacerbated by wearing a face mask

-Children with Autism or other developmental disorders

Here are some suggestions to help your child get used to wearing a mask. Remember that this may take practice and over time they will hopefully become more accustomed to wearing one.

-We may recommend occupational therapy to help your child become comfortable with wearing a mask

-Try different kinds of masks. Switching the brand or fabric may help. Your child may also find that masks with adjustable ear loops to be more comfortable. You can also try a child size surgical mask or letting your child choose a mask with a fun design.

– You can try wearing a mask for a few minutes while watching their favorite show or let your child put masks on their stuffed animals while they wear their mask.

-As a parent, showing your children that you wear a mask when away from home will encourage them as well

-Start a reward chart that leads to a prize at the end of the week

-Work with your child’s therapist or counselor if your child has sensory issues, anxiety, etc.

-Have positive conversations with your children explaining why masks are important and how they can slow the spread of germs.

We hope this information is helpful for you and your family. Here is an article from the CDC about choosing a mask that is right for you and your child

:https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/about-face-coverings.html.

Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions or feedback you can provide during the COVID-19 pandemic. We are truly honored to care for every family at Wildflower Pediatrics!