As the coronavirus pandemic continues in Australia, it is important to continue visiting your GP for preventative healthcare. Prevention is a key aspect to managing a number of potentially deadly conditions, and shouldn’t be neglected.
What is Preventative Healthcare?
Preventative Healthcare is a core focus for GP’s. It includes assisting patients with lowering risk factors such a diet and exercise, as well as routine screenings for blood pressure and cholesterol.
Why is Preventative Healthcare important?
By keeping healthy and active, as well as screening for conditions early, you can dramatically improve your prognosis if you contract diseases such as bowel cancer, diabetes and heart conditions.
During the coronavirus pandemic, GP’s around the country have seen a drop in patients attending their practices for these sorts of services. By delaying your visit to your GP, you are potentially delaying your diagnosis of a number of preventable diseases.
“A large portion of what our doctors do is preventative healthcare, so there may be a spike in health conditions down the track,” says Michelle Horswood, Practice Manager at O’Connell St Clinic.
“A lot of what we do is trying to keep people healthy. For example, doing regular health checks on patients to screen for diabetes and a number of different cancers. If people stop seeing their doctor, they might get quite unwell later down the track.”
“We are starting to see more people return to their doctor now, and introduction of Telehealth has helped see more patients. However, there are still people avoiding healthcare.”
While there are concerns about infection risks, patients should be assured that O’Connell St Clinic has put a number of practices into place to ensure patients can be seen in a safe manner.
“If you are at all concerned about coming into the clinic, we highly recommend using our Telehealth service,” says Michelle. “You’ll be able to speak to your doctor directly over the phone or by video chat, without having to leave your home.”
Patients shouldn’t ignore health concerns at this time. It could result in a condition becoming worse, or a late diagnosis could lead to something that was curable becoming incurable.
“It’s more important than ever to protect your health. Your GP is your first step in doing this” says Michelle.
Points to remember to manage your health
- Speak to your GP if you notice any new symptoms – this can now be done over the phone
- Don’t delay any tests that your GP recommends you get done
- Continue a healthy diet and exercise regime – your doctor can help you achieve this