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COVID-19 Symptoms, Diagnosis, Testing, & Vaccination

COVID-19

ACMC is committed to providing safe care for patients and caregivers during the ongoing pandemic. COVID-19 is a contagious respiratory virus that spreads from person to person among close contact (less than six feet). It can be transmitted by sneezing or coughing. It may also be possible to contract the virus by touching surfaces that have been contaminated. A person may be infected with COVID-19 but not experience symptoms.

COVID-19 symptoms

Symptoms for COVID-19 vary in severity and based on which variant infects a person. Symptoms based on the current variant we see in Ashtabula County include:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough and/or shortness of breath, difficulty breathing
  • Body or muscle aches
  • Headache
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Sore throat
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Fatigue

COVID-19 testing and diagnosis

Based on symptoms or test results, an ACMC provider will recommend treatment options based on the severity of the symptoms or on patient-specific risks (such as chronic respiratory issues).

Patients can schedule an in-office appointment or telehealth call with a provider. ACMC Express Care also offers telehealth appointments. A provider will review a patients’ medical history and current symptoms, and then request a COVID-19 test if needed. If a test confirms COVID-19, the provider will recommend appropriate treatment options.

The test for COVID-19 involves swabbing the nose. There is no blood test to detect the virus. Home testing kits are available from local pharmacies or libraries and some retail stores. Every home in the United States is eligible to order four free at-home test kits via this CDC site. You can also contact your provider or ACMC Express Care for COVID-19 testing.

COVID-19 Treatment

Consult your provider about possible treatment options that are best for your symptoms. Do not delay treatment. Recommended treatment options can help you cope with symptoms and potentially lessen the severity of the virus. Delaying or avoiding treatment can lead to serious health complications.

Providers may recommend the following:

  • Medication. Will help alleviate COVID-19 symptoms.
  • COVID-19 antiviral pills. These pills are taken at home and disrupt the replication of the virus to stop it from spreading in your body.
  • Monoclonal antibody infusion. These help the immune system recognize and respond more effectively to the virus.
  • Hospital admission. For patients with severe respiratory issues, inpatient treatment may be the best option. Patients will be admitted and provided a COVID-19 care team of hospitalists, respiratory specialists, and others familiar with treating severe respiratory disease.

COVID-19 Vaccine & Boosters

ACMC family medicine, internal medicine, and pediatric providers offer COVID-19 vaccines and booster shots in their offices at The Ashtabula Clinic and at Family Health Centers in Ashtabula, Conneaut, Geneva, Jefferson, and Orwell. Here’s what you need to know:

  • To schedule an appointment, please contact your provider or request an appointment via MyChart.
  • To schedule your child for the vaccine or booster, please call 440-997-6969, option 1.
  • For those who are receiving the first vaccine of Moderna or Pfizer, a second appointment will be scheduled for the following month.
  • The booster is recommended at least five months after the second dose of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines and two months after getting the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. The Moderna booster is available to anyone 18 and older. CDC recommends a Moderna or Pfizer booster to individuals who received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. The Pfizer booster is available to anyone 12-and-older.
  • If you are getting a second dose or booster, please remember to bring your vaccine card to your appointment. Pfizer also has booster recommendations for those ages 5 to 11 with specific immunocompromised issues. Please consult your pediatrician for more information.

COVID-19 Safe Practices

There are steps you can take to protect yourself and your loved ones from exposure to COVID-19.

  • Wear a face mask that covers your nose and mouth.
  • Practice social distancing. Maintain a 6-foot distance from other people and avoid crowds.
  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 15-20 seconds. If soap and water aren’t available, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Staying home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue. Throw it in the trash when you’re done.
  • Get the COVID-19 vaccine and booster.