COVID-19: Information for Members


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Note: Some doctors may be able to provide some of your services through a telehealth visit. Also, the Alliance has resources to support members with stress and coping during this pandemic. Go here for more information.


COVID-19: The basics


What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

The CDC has updated its list of COVID-19 symptoms to include a wide range of symptoms, ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after being exposed to the virus and may include:


  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Muscle pain
  • Sore throat
  • New: loss of taste or smell

If you have any of the emergency warning signs below, call 9-1-1 or go to the nearest emergency room:


  • Trouble breathing
  • Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
  • New: confusion or inability to wake or stay awake
  • Bluish lips or face

For people with chronic illnesses or the elderly, the symptoms can be more severe and life threatening. People with asthma and other chronic conditions are at a higher risk of complications from COVID-19. Visit the CDC for more information. Note: This website is only available in English and Spanish.


What should I do if I think I have COVID-19?

You should call your doctor if:


  • You have been in contact with someone who has been sick with COVID-19; or
  • You are experiencing the above symptoms. Having these symptoms does not mean you have COVID-19, but it’s best to call your doctor.

If you are unable to see your doctor, Alliance members can also call the Nurse Advice Line (NAL) and a registered nurse will help you decide what to do next. The NAL is available 24 hours, 7 days a week. It’s fast, easy and at no cost to you. Call: (844) 971-8907 (TTY: Dial 7-1-1).


For more information:

Call your doctor or call the Alliance at 800-700-3874, ext. 5505. For hearing and speech assistance call (TTY 7-1-1). Or visit the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/faq.html.


Note: This website is available in English and Spanish.


If someone in my community tests positive for COVID-19, what should I know?

It is important to know that the CDC states that even if there are confirmed coronavirus cases in a community, the risk for contracting the coronavirus remains low for most people. If someone in your community contracts the virus, be sure to follow all advice and guidelines provided by state and local health officials.


Where can I go for more information on COVID-19?

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html


California State Government

https://covid19.ca.gov/


Santa Cruz County Health Services Agency

http://www.santacruzhealth.org/HSAHome/HSADivisions/PublicHealth/...


Monterey County Health Department

https://www.co.monterey.ca.us/government/departments-a-h/health/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov


Merced County Public Health

https://www.co.merced.ca.us/3350/Coronavirus-Disease-2019


Local Community Resources


2-1-1.org

http://211.org/services/covid19


Prevent getting sick


What can I do to stay well?

Stay home if you are feeling sick. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, stay home to prevent spreading germs.


  • If you think someone may be sick, avoid close contact with that person.
  • Practice good hygiene. Wash your hands frequently for at least 20 seconds using soap and water. Hand sanitizer may also be used to keep your hands clean in between washing them.
  • Don’t touch your eyes, mouth, and nose as touching these areas can spread germs.
  • Use a tissue to cover your cough or sneeze and throw the tissue in the trash as soon as possible. Then, wash your hands immediately.
  • Keep touched areas free of germs. Clean objects and surfaces with a cleaning spray, soap, or disinfectant wipe.

Should I wear a face mask?

The CDC recommends covering your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when you are around others. This is to protect other people in case you may have the virus. You could spread COVID-19 to others even if you do not feel sick. The cloth face cover does not mean that you should not social distance yourself from others. You should continue to keep about 6 feet between yourself and others. Everyone should wear a cloth face cover when they must go out in public for essential needs, such as the grocery store. Do NOT use a face mask meant for a healthcare worker as these are in short supply.


Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is not conscious, injured or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.


For more information on the use of cloth face coverings to slow the spread of COVID-19, visit the CDC website here. This page is only available in English and Spanish.


Resources for Seniors

  • The State of California’s Aging and Adults Info Line connects to local Area Agencies on Aging. Call 800-510-2020 (available in English and Spanish). For the Hearing or Speech Assistance Line, call 800-735-2929 (TTY: Dial 7-1-1).
  • The California Department of Aging has developed a new activity guide and weekly planner, "Feeling Good & Staying Connected". This activity guide is available only in English and Spanish.

Stress and Coping


I’m having a lot of anxiety or feeling stressed about COVID-19. What can I do about it?

Public health emergencies, such as COVID-19 can lead to stress, anxiety, lack of focus and more. All are natural responses to deal with day-to-day pressures. Mental health services are available to Alliance members. The Alliance contracts with a company called Beacon Health Options (Beacon) to help you connect with the mental health services you need. Call Beacon at 855-765-9700 to speak with someone who will can help.


Health plan information


Will I be charged a co-pay or cost sharing for COVID-19 doctor appointments or testing?

You will not be charged co-pays or cost sharing for medically necessary screenings and tests done for COVID-19. This includes hospital, emergency department, urgent care visits, and doctor office visits where the purpose of the visit is to be screened and/or tested for COVID-19.


I need to visit the Alliance. Can I still visit in-person?

No. In order to maintain social distancing guidelines and avoid risk spreading illness, the public areas and service counters for the Alliance are closed during this time. This means that members may not visit our offices in person.


While member lobbies and public areas remain closed, the Alliance is continuing to maintain business operations. Our mission is to ensure our members in Monterey, Santa Cruz and Merced counties can continue to access needed health care services.


To speak to Alliance staff, call 800-700-3874 and dial the extension you wish to reach.


  • Member Services 800-700-3874, ext. 5505
  • Care Management 800-700-3874, ext. 5512
  • Non-Medical Transportation assistance: 800-700-3874, ext. 5577

Telehealth Services


Telehealth Services

Some providers may be able to provide some of your services through a telehealth visit. These visits offer high quality care without you needing to leave your home and are a safe way to receive medical care without going to your doctor’s office. Telehealth visits may involve having a live video or phone conversation with your provider.


Other telehealth visits may involve sharing information with your provider without a live conversation. It is important that both you and your provider agree that the use of a telehealth visit for a particular service is appropriate for you.


Can I talk to my doctor by phone? Do I need internet access or a computer?

Internet access or a computer is not always needed, but you may need access to a smart phone or tablet to complete a telehealth visit. If you do not have access to a computer or the internet, you may be able to make an appointment for a telehealth visit with your doctor over the phone. If you need care, call your doctor to see if telehealth visits are an option.


I can’t get in to see my doctor. What can I do?

If you are unable to see your doctor, Alliance members can call the Alliance Nurse Advice Line (NAL) and a registered nurse will help you decide what to do next. Call: 844-971-8907 or (TTY: Dial 7-1-1).


The nurse can also connect you to a doctor over video or telephone conference, as part of the MDLIVE program. The doctor can address your medical concern, recommend treatment, or provide a prescription for you. Medical consultations via telephone are provided by MDLIVE 24 hours a day, seven days a week. MDLIVE provides language line support for non-English speakers.


Free or Low-Cost Internet

  • Many internet providers are offering free or low-cost internet plans to low-income residents. Please check with your local internet provider for details.

Seeking medical care and filling my prescriptions


I have a doctor appointment scheduled for another issue (well-check, etc.) but I don’t want to expose myself or my family to others who may have the coronavirus. Should I keep my appointment?

As a rule, it is important to keep scheduled doctor visits to stay on track with your health goals. Doctors have processes in place that allow them to assess and isolate sick patients from healthy patients. Be sure to follow the tips above to keep yourself and others well when you visit the doctor. If you are still unsure, call your doctor to ask if you should keep your appointment or reschedule.


My child has a well-child checkup, or they are supposed to be receive their shots in the near future. Should I keep the appointment?

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, we encourage you to keep your child’s scheduled doctor visits to stay on track with his or her health goals. If you are unsure if you should keep your child’s appointment or reschedule, call your child’s doctor.


I’m having an acute medical emergency (for example, chest pains) not related to COVID-19. Should I avoid the emergency room?

If you are experiencing a true medical emergency, we recommend you seek the necessary medical attention immediately or call 911 if it is a life-threatening emergency. Most hospitals have protocols in place to isolate COVID-19 patients from other patients.


I am pregnant or recently had a baby, should I continue my prenatal and postpartum care visits? Yes. During your pregnancy and after the birth of your child, regular visits with your doctor are important to help keep you and your baby healthy. At these visits, your doctor will see how you and your baby are doing, this also includes maternal mental health care. If you think you may have been exposed or have been sick with COVID-19, you are still encouraged to keep your scheduled doctor visits to stay on track with your health plan goals. If you are unsure, call your doctor for more information or to schedule a visit. You can also visit https://www.ccah-alliance.org/education.html or call the Alliance’s Health Education Line at 800-700-3974, ext. 5580 (TTY: Dial 7-1-1), to learn about prenatal and postpartum care programs offered by the Alliance.


How should I fill my prescriptions during this time?

You are encouraged to have at least a 30-day supply of necessary prescriptions on hand. In addition, members can receive a 90-day supply, including free standard delivery, for most prescription medications mailed through MedImpact Direct. To setup mail order for medications, call your doctor or pharmacy or visit https://www.medimpactdirect.com/ or call 855-873-8739 (multiple languages are available).


Note: The website is only in English.


In addition, Walgreens and CVS pharmacies are now offering free delivery for all eligible medications. Talk to your pharmacist or call your local Walgreens or CVS for more information.


The Alliance also encourages members to check out SortPak, a mail order pharmacy that can arrange delivery to your home. Please visit their website at www.sortpak.com or view this flyer to learn more.


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