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Dr. Brent Bennett and Dr. Allyson Hanson of Trinity Christus Clinic in Hope Share Info On Avoiding Corona Virus

By Staff, 03/13/20 11:37 AM

There were no reported cases of Corona Virus locally as of Friday morning.  Two local doctors from the Trinity Christus Clinic in Hope took time from their busy schedule to offer some tips on avoiding the virus and what to do if you think you might have it.

“There’s no reason to panic right now,” says Dr. Brent Bennett.  “I think the most important thing for everyone to do is stay calm, wash your hands, and try to avoid large groups of people,” he said.   Dr. Bennett continued, “If you are around people, keep your distance…about six feet is a good, healthy distance to stay away.  When it comes to medical care, I think if you’re concerned you might have some of the symptoms of this virus like cough, fever, shortness of breath, before you just walk into your doctor’s office, call them and let them help you figure out if coming in for a visit is the most important thing or if staying home and trying to manage your symptoms would be more beneficial to you…and to try to prevent spreading this virus to a clinic who may be sicker than you and wouldn’t be able to handle catching a virus like this.”  He says he thinks the virus seems to be very similar to the flu but maybe is a little more contagious and easier to pass from person to person.  “I think we really have to all try to do our part in preventing the spread of this by staying at home, washing your hands, and if you are sick, especially, don’t go around a bunch of other people,” says Dr. Bennett.  He continues, “If you do get sick, quarantine yourself in your home, try to avoid your family members, and call your local doctor to figure out where we need to go from there.”  Dr. Bennett says breathing problems are going to be the main thing that requires someone to seek a little more aggressive medical management than just staying at home.  He also says potentially a high fever can be a problem although much of this can be controlled with Tylenol, Ibuprofen, or lukewarm baths.  Dr. Bennett also says you would need to stay hydrated and if you have uncontrolled vomiting that would also be a reason for more aggressive care than just staying at home.  He says going to the emergency room without significant symptoms is probably not a good idea.

Dr. Allyson Hanson says “The main thing right now is don’t panic.  The news media has played a big part in promoting the hysteria of the Corona Virus…overall it’s generally a pretty mild virus…you might have a cough with it, a slight fever…a lot of the same things you’re going see with the common cold or the flu right now.  The most important thing to do is remain calm.   If you’re feeling sick, don’t go out into the community, stay home…decrease the amount of exposure to other people, that will decrease the transmission of the virus”.  She also said the elderly are most likely to have a more difficult time with the virus.

Both Dr. Bennett and Dr. Allyson urge everyone wash their hands as frequently as possible and to use hand sanitizer.  They urge avoiding shaking hands or hugging.  Anyone who coughs needs to cover their mouth or cough in the crook of their elbow.  They also urge avoiding large gatherings.

The Arkansas Department of Health is staying in touch with all providers and the Centers for Disease Control is also staying in touch with local health providers with the latest information on the virus.

Should you wish to call the Trinity Christus Clinic you may call 722-1020,.