Q. COVID-19 affects each person who gets it somewhat differently. What symptoms should cause me to seek care and how long should I wait to seek medical care. Does any of this change based on the number of cases that are reported in my community? A. So you’ve got the sniffles and a mild cough, but no fever.
Front-line health care workers pushed to the limit, extraordinary lines for food, surging demand for shelter – these were some of the scenes as the pandemic swept through the state during this unprecedented year. Our photographers captured these moments and more as they illustrated a year’s worth of compelling stories. Scroll through the gallery to see C-HIT’s outstanding photography in 2020 by photographers Melanie Stengel, Steve Hamm, Carl Jordan Castro, Carol Leonetti Dannhauser and Cloe Poisson. And a shout-out to those who shared their photos of the moments our photographers couldn’t get to.
Q. People are concerned about the isolation and negative psychological impact that the separation of family members is causing. Residents are seeing a higher number of family members suffering and a resulting high rate of suicide cases. What are the findings and what is being done about this in our communities? A. The number of people looking for help with anxiety and depression has skyrocketed from January through September 2020, according to Mental Health America.
Q. What regulations are expected to be in effect during the holidays as far as gathering sizes of personal family celebrations and religious services? Will community members be prohibited from celebrating as a large family or with their congregation of faith? What are suggestions for alternative gatherings outside of the traditional large multi-generational family gathering or house of worship services? A. As of Nov.
Q. Please provide an update on where in the process of creating a vaccine we are, and what are the plans for distribution when it becomes available? A. Vaccines normally require years of research and testing before entering clinical trials, but scientists are pushing to produce a safe, effective coronavirus vaccine by early 2021. Researchers are currently testing 44 vaccines in human clinical trials, according to the New York Times’ vaccine tracker. Briefly, here are the stages of producing a vaccine: preclinical testing, where the vaccine is tested on cells and then animals; Phase 1 safety trials, where the vaccine is given to a small number of people; Phase 2 expanded trials, where the vaccine is given to hundreds of people split into groups; Phase 3 efficacy trials, where thousands of people receive the vaccine to see if they become infected, compared to volunteers who receive a placebo.
Four nurses were recently disciplined by the state Board of Examiners for Nursing for drug and alcohol abuse and for photographing a patient without consent. The state placed Sara Scobie’s practical nurse license on probation for one year and fined her $500 for photographing a juvenile patient and sharing details of the patient’s personal and clinical information without parental consent, according to her signed order. Scobie was also reprimanded by the state Department of Public Health (DPH). Scobie of Milford, who was providing home care for a medically compromised child through All Pointe HomeCare of Cheshire, photographed the patient and then shared those photos without permission, according to the signed order. During the probation period Scobie cannot be employed as a nurse by any personnel provider service, home health agency, or assisted living agency, according to the order.
Q. We heard from a woman who had asymptomatic COVID-19, discovered through a test, who recovered and later tested negative. Then, after every other member of her family developed symptomatic COVID-19, she tested positive again. Had her virus gone dormant or was she reinfected? A. “There are no confirmed reports to date of a person being re-infected with COVID-19 within three months of initial infection,” says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Q. Who can accompany a patient to the Emergency Department, and are there translators available for non-English speaking patients? A. For the most part, a patient in the Emergency Department (ED) can be accompanied by another person at all of the state’s hospitals. Pandemic protocols dictate that both the patient and their escort will be screened for COVID-19 symptoms, and masks will be provided if the patient and escort don’t have them. The majority of the state’s hospitals are operated by four health care companies: Trinity Health of New England, which oversees St.
Q. Who should get tested for COVID-19, where do you go for a test, and more:
A. If you think you have COVID and have a primary care doctor, call your primary care doctor first. Many primary care providers can test their patients on site. If you do not have a primary care doctor, you can try to get an appointment at an urgent care clinic or a community care clinic. A list of community clinics in the state can be found here.
Over the past several months, the state Board of Examiners for Nursing has disciplined the following nurses for improper patient care, drug abuse and falsifying license paperwork, among other violations. • The registered nurse (RN) license of Sashni C. Popp of Norwalk was recently reprimanded and placed on probation for one year for failing to properly care for a patient’s wound and for not meeting the standard of care for wound treatment, according to her signed consent order. • The Connecticut RN license of Amy Slepica, of Lakeville, Minn., was revoked because she made false statements on her application for a CT nursing license in December 2017 and again on her license renewal in November 2018. Slepica, whose Minnesota RN license was disciplined in 2017 and 2018 for failure to provide adequate patient care and to maintain adequate patient records, indicated on her CT applications that her RN license had not been the subject of disciplinary action in any other state. • The RN license of Nicolette Strizzi of Windsor has been suspended indefinitely while the board investigates allegations of substance against her, according to her signed interim consent order.