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About Coronavirus (COVID-19)

The physicians and staff of Bethesda Pediatrics are working to keep our families informed and guide you through the novel coronavirus pandemic known as COVID-19.


First and foremost, we are open for business and are here to help.  Additionally, we are implementing changes to our office operations in an effort to contain the spread of the virus and keep you well.


About Coronavirus:

Coronaviruses are a family of viruses that generally cause mild respiratory illnesses like the common cold.  A new strain of the virus was identified during an outbreak in Wuhan, China, in 2019 and has been rapidly spreading worldwide.  Because it is a new virus, it is hard to predict how it will spread and affect people.  Please rely on reputable sources of information such as the Centers for Disease Control and the American Academy of Pediatrics.


Coronavirus is spread from person to person through close contact with respiratory droplets (coughing and sneezing) or possibly through contact with contaminated surfaces.  It is felt that most people will have mild symptoms like fever and cough, and children do not seem to be at high risk.  However, older adults and those with chronic medical conditions like lung disease, heart disease, diabetes, and compromised immune systems can have complications including shortness of breath, pneumonia, and even death.


There is currently no vaccine or any specific antiviral treatment for Coronavirus.



Our goal, like yours, is to limit the spread of the virus to our patients and families while still ensuring access to medical care for those in need – whether for acute illness or routine care such as check ups and vaccines.


We have INDEFINITELY SUSPENDED ALL WALK-IN SICK VISITS!  Those needing care for illness need to be appropriately triaged (screened) to limit unintentional exposure to and spread of Coronavirus disease.

Our office phone lines are now open at 8:00 am to speak to a physician for advice about scheduling and appointment.


If your child is ill, please:

  1. Stay home if possible.  We will do our best to provide guidance over the phone for how to treat most common illnesses.  We have always had an early morning direct phone line to the physicians, and we have expanded this service so you’ll have increased access to and opportunity for phone advice.  We also now also now offer virtual visits via secure telemedicine appointments.

  2. Make an appointment to be seen only after speaking with a physician or nurse. We anticipate visits for fevers, flu-like illnesses and sore throats, but we hope to minimize office visits for common colds, rashes, diarrhea, and other things we can help you manage at home.  We also respectfully ask that you not use the convenient time off from school to address longer standing and chronic issues that have not acutely changed.  

  3. Understand our protocols for infection control.  Follow posted signs for the proper entrance into the office based on reason for visit.  DO NOT walk around public spaces such as the waiting rooms and hallways unless you need the bathroom.  Bring your own toys and books as we have removed all of ours from common areas. Please do not bring more than one caregiver or any siblings to the office when possible, and please make sure caregivers have no symptoms of illness.  Parents and children over the age of 2 years need to wear face coverings.


If you child is due for a check up or vaccines:

  • We will continue to be available for these needs, but will also understand if you would rather reschedule for a later time.

  • Please expect modifications to our schedule!  We hope to batch well visits at non-peak times of the day.  Please be flexible where you can.


Should you come to our office please understand that:

  • Like you, we have limited access to personal protective equipment like N95 masks and gloves

  • We currently CAN test for Coronavirus! (updated 9/11/20 - please see here)

  • We are disinfecting the office regularly to limit spread of illness


How to protect yourself and your family:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds, or use hand sanitizer with a 60% or higher alcohol base when unable to wash with soap and water

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick just as you would during cold and flu season

  • Stay home from work and self quarantine if you are feeling sick

  • Cough and sneeze into tissues or your elbow

  • Clean and disinfect household surfaces regularly

  • Avoid unnecessary travel and social engagements

  • Avoid crowded indoor and outdoor activity places like gyms and public parks 

  • Current guidelines require that adults and children over the age of 2 years wear face coverings in public places.


While the kids are home from school:

  • Enjoy the unexpected family time!

  • Read together and play games

  • Remain active while being aware of social distancing

  • Limit screen time!

  • Provide reassurance that we are doing everything we can to keep everyone safe and healthy

  • Stay informed, and quite importantly, don’t panic!


Please call our office at (301) 299-8930 with any other questions or concerns


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