Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). A novel coronavirus such as COVID-19 is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans.

While we are still learning about COVID-19, we do know that those with chronic conditions and those that are immune compromised are at increased risk of developing COVID-19. It is also believed that for the at risk population, the virus presents with more severe symptoms. COVID-9 is rapidly evolving and we want to encourage everyone to be proactive and practice the following:

* Avoid close contact with people who are sick
* Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth
* Stay home if you are sick.
* Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and dispose of the tissue in the trash,
* Clean and disinfect frequently used objects and surfaces.
* Wear a mask. While it was originally thought that those that are well should not wear a mask, it is now felt that everyone should wear a mask while out in public and not able to keep social distance of at least six feet. Remember, wearing a mask protects others!

* Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating and after blowing your nose or coughing.
* If soap and water are not readily available use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.

* Practice social distancing.

Remember those with chronic kidney disease, those on dialysis, and transplant recipients are part of the vulnerable population when it comes to COVID-19. It is also thought that those that have recovered from the virus may face kidney consequences down the road! Even though all parts of our state have or are close to reopening, the virus is still around and is still  being contracted. New York has done a great job in slowing down COVID-19 and we can’t let our progress go backwards! Please follow safety guidelines and protect your health, as well as that of others!

Being informed is one of your most powerful tools. Here are some available resources:
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has resources for the public and healthcare providers.
The New York State Department of Health has information specific to the impact on New York State.
The National Renal Administrators Association has a number of resources for clinic managers.
The American Society of Nephrology has posted a webinar and slide deck for clinicians.

We are continually monitoring the developments and will adjust our scheduling accordingly always with the best interests of our patients in mind. Thank you for your support of the NeKF throughout the year. If you have specific questions or concerns please email or call 800-999-9697.