Frequently Asked Questions
TELEHEALTH – I Have A Telehealth Appointment Scheduled. How Do I Join?
Telehealth is now in place and working really well. Medicare has now endorsed it as a permanent fixture (as of late 2021). Many of you have already had a Telehealth appointment during the pandemic and the feedback has been great.
It’s really simple to use. Trust me.
Visit our website osnem.com.au
Click on the ‘TELEHEALTH LINK’
Follow the prompts, allow access to your camera and microphone for the session
You will enter a ‘virtual waiting room’. When the doctor joins you will see each other and the consult will begin as per usual.
Aim to be in the waiting room 5 minutes before your scheduled appointment time, as you would an in-clinic appointment.
Prefer a desktop or laptop over a mobile phone, if you have the choice. We find sometimes the connection is better, especially on some days. Usually smart phone connection quality is good.
If the connection is poor or repeatedly temporarily drops out, turning the camera off may help (we’ll talk you through it). Very occasionally we may need to revert to phone call for audio. In that case the Doctor will call you.
If you have any problems or questions or if you’re not confident with new technology, give reception a call. They will walk you through it.
How Can I Book Or Change An Appointment Online?
You can now book (or change) an appointment online, any time 24/7 convenient to you.
- Visit our website osnem.com.au
- Click on ‘BOOK AN APPOINTMENT’ button (if using a desktop/tablet top right-hand side, if using a mobile device scroll down). This will connect you to our booking portal, follow the prompts
- Select the appointment type you require from the drop-down menu
- Identify Yourself (name, phone number, DOB) – TIP: Click ‘remember me on this trusted device’ and it will remember your details for next time
- Identify the practitioner you wish to see (scroll down)
- Select your preferred appointment time (‘See all Times’ will access available appointments)
- For certain bookings (e.g. telehealth) you will be required to enter your credit card details (no payment will be taken until the completion of your appointment)
- Download the free AMS Connect app from your app store (white cross on blue background)
- Follow the prompts (very similar process to above)
- If you’re having any difficulty with the process please call our reception staff during office hours
Updated Jan 2022
I’VE TESTED COVID POSITIVE - what should I do?
If you have recently tested positive to covid on rapid antigen test (RAT) or a throat/nose swab PCR test, I (Dr Marcus) have compiled the following which I trust is of some assistance.
These are basic principles and guidelines only. This is not individualised advice. As always, talk to your primary carer/GP for advice specific for you. In an emergency call 000.
Stay at home (we all know the drill by now!)
Reach out to friends, family, or neighbours. Let them know you tested positive and you’ll be isolating. They may even drop some chicken soup to your door or arrange a pharmacy run.
If you’ve had recent close contacts, inform them. Encourage them to get tested and isolate until result is negative.
Everyone’s illness course will be different. Take it easy and rest up.
Stay well hydrated. Choose to drink water, electrolyte solutions, herbal teas.
Consume simple whole foods. Chicken soup is a popular favourite and delicious.
If your appetite is reduced, try to sip fluids regularly and eat when you can. Taste and smell can be affected which may affect your appetite.
Monitor Your Condition
Check and document (include date, time and current symptoms) your
- pulse rate (normal range is 60-100 per minute, will increase with a fever)
- temperature and
- oxygen saturation
about 2-4 times a day or when needed (i.e., if you feel unwell or have a fever)
Ideally, I recommend you access:
- a good thermometer
- oxygen saturation probe (a device that you place over the tip of any finger that measures your blood oxygen level and pulse rate – no nail polish!) Normal oxygen level is >95-100%. The closer to 100% the better
- a blood pressure monitor (optional, but particularly recommend if you have other health conditions including heart disease)
Fever is a normal response to infection, it’s not necessarily a bad thing in itself.
Persisting fever or high fevers (>38.5) can be managed with the usual things you might use e.g., paracetamol or ibuprofen. Don’t exceed recommended doses.
If the fever doesn’t come down seek medical advice.
Talk to your Primary Carer as this will differ for everyone and not all supplements listed below will be suitable for everyone.
As a basic plan, consider
- Vitamin C 1g every 4-6 hours
- Vitamin D 3000-5000 IU daily
- Zinc 25-50mg daily (take zinc with food)
- Quercetin x 1 three times a day
Many other supplements have been suggested. Discuss with your Primary Carer.
The virus first takes hold in the nose and throat. Some literature suggests using betadine throat gargles and a nasal spray. Avoid betadine gargles if you have an overactive thyroid condition, use an alternative mouthwash. Use the sprays and gargles as directed. The betadine needs dilution with water as per instructions. Don’t swallow it. Gargle it for 30 -60 seconds and spit it out.
PHONE CHECK INS
Touch base with friends or family
Talk to your GP. Keep a record of your measured observations handy and any questions to discuss.
The Covid hotline number 1800 020 080
WHEN TO CALL 000 or HOSPITAL
If you are:
- Increasingly unwell, or you/one of your team is worried about you
- Experiencing Shortness of breath, chest pain, or other worrying symptoms
- Your oxygen saturation level is low or dropping. I haven’t seen any definitive guidelines, but readings in the low 90s (and anything below that) are the concern. If you have underlying lung issues you will need medical help (and oxygen support) earlier.
- Ideally, we want to see OXYGEN SATS ABOVE 94-95%
(when you are breathing normal room air)
- If your oxygen drops down briefly into the low 90’s (that is, 91-92-93) try changing positions (e.g., sitting up, change the oxygen probe to another finger and make sure you’re getting a good reading). If it improves again (>94%), great.
Call for medical advice. If it does not improve (i.e., remains in the low 90s) call 000.
- Any oxygen saturation reading in the 80’s call the ambulance now (000), you require urgent medical care
Suggested supply list
- Oxygen saturation probe (chemist, if available)
- Thermometer (chemist)
- Betadine throat gargle (chemist) and FESS nasal spray (suggest one with tea tree and/or one with eucalyptus)
- Supplement supply – see above (we can arrange home delivery)
- Two weeks supply of any regular medications (chemist)
- Phone number list of GP, Chemist, Ambulance 000, Covid Hotline 1800 020 080 (operates 24 hours), plus your support crew
- Activities to keep you going through isolation
WHAT NOT TO DO?
Don’t go out and about and risk infecting others.
Don’t share nasal sprays, etc with other family members. Ideally use separate bathrooms if that’s an option in your house.
Some people have asked about should I nebulise this or that? I don’t think it’s a great idea (happy to discuss why in a consult). The exception is if you are asthmatic and you need your treatment. There may be other exceptions.
Don’t wait at home if your condition or observations deteriorates e.g., oxygen is dropping.
Covid illness will be mild and moderate for many. Severe for some. The main risk is deterioration of your breathing and oxygen levels. If you have underlying medical issues seek advice early.
I put this together on Jan 9 2022 to provide OSNEM patients some pragmatic advice. In covid times, policies change quickly! So, don’t consider it gospel. If anyone sees any glaring errors or obvious omissions, let me know. This isn’t an evidence based Medical article, so I ask respectfully you don’t copy it or share to social media.
UPDATED Jan 9 2022
Nutritional & Environmental Medicine
Shop 8, Rajah Road
Ocean Shopping Village
Ocean Shores, 2483
Mon 9:00am – 4:00pm
Tue 9:00am – 4:00pm
Wed 9:00am – 4:00pm
Thu 9:00am – 4:00pm
Consultations outside of these hours by appointment only
Ph 02 6680 3208
Fx 02 6680 2954