Living Safely with Diabetes During COVID-19

Posted by Sarah Tyre on 7/31/20 2:00 PM

Now more than ever, it is important to maintain regular health care, especially for those with underlying medical conditions. People with diabetes should continue prioritizing their routine health care during this time. Lack of adequate follow-up care could mean not realizing when diabetes is in poor control. This places them at a higher risk of developing a more advanced case of COVID-19, and can lead to other complications of diabetes.

Following Safety Guidelines

Dr. Ostrander 2Dr. Patricia Ostrander, MD, an endocrinologist with Dignity Health Mercy Medical Group, shared that whether or not you have an underlying medical condition, you should follow CDC guidelines to avoid exposure. This includes maintaining at least six feet of distance from others in public, washing your hands frequently, wearing masks in public, and limiting unnecessary public excursions.

However, as Dr. Ostrander shared, adhering to social distancing guidelines doesn’t necessarily need to be limited to public spaces. There is evidence that following similar guidelines at home can also help reduce the risk of transmission of the virus. This is especially true for those living in a crowded household. 

Maintaining Routine Care

Patients with diabetes should continue prioritizing routine care during this time as lack of adequate follow-up and poor treatment could them at higher risk of developing a more advanced case of COVID-19, or lead to other complications. Fortunately, virtual visits are more accessible than ever before. Dignity Health Medical Group recently ramped up its virtual care services, offering virtual appointments with primary and specialty care physicians. Virtual visits are an ideal way of ensuring you are continuing to receive the care you need to treat your diabetes while staying home. Much like an in-person appointment, patients can discuss their personal health with their physician in the privacy of their home.

Dr. Ostrander also pointed out that  it is increasingly important that patients monitor their health at home through practices such as checking their blood pressure and weighing themselves. For those who are being treated for diabetes, monitoring blood glucose levels at home is critical so that the physician can assess how well a medical regimen is working and determine the best course of action.

For those who prefer an in-person appointment, clinics are taking all necessary precautions to keep patients safe. Call your local primary or specialty facility to see if there are any updates due to COVID-19. For more information on Dignity Health's commitment to safety during the COVID-19 pandemic, please visit

Talk to your primary care provider about a referral 

Topics: Mercy Medical Group, Diabetes, Virtual Visits, COVID-19

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