Dr. York Yates Coronavirus Update

Updated 3/26/2020

The safety of our patients and staff is always our first priority; our office is currently closed to most in-person visits.  We will be re-opening as soon as there is clarity of the situation and it is safe to do son.  Currently, we are taking it on a week-by-week basis and targeting May.   As always, I have given my patients access to me and my staff in the palm of their hand through our symplast app.   My staff has been busy rescheduling surgical patients to future dates and informing postoperative patients that we will be doing their visits virtually.   Thankfully, with the Symplast app, I have access to all of our patient records including operative notes, medical records, photos, text conversation, and pharmacy records.   The show must go on, just differently.  Thanks for your patience in this difficult time. 

Surgical patient rescheduling

To our patients scheduled between now and May:  By now you have either talked to a member of our staff or they will contact you shortly.  We are not canceling any surgery, just pushing them back to more certain times.   Based on available information, I believe we will likely be back operating by early May, possibly seeing patients in consultation a couple of weeks before that.   We will start earlier or later should situations allow or necessitate.    

New patients looking to schedule surgery

If you are a new patient who would like to schedule a consultation, this can easily be done virtually through the app.  Assuming you are a good candidate, we have the ability to do every aspect except the hands-on physical exam.  This includes discussions about goals, options, the surgical experience, recovery, and risks.   We will evaluate physical attributes via photo or video through our HIPPA secure app.   Our staff will follow up with pricing and scheduling details.   All from the comfort of your own home.   Who knows, when this is all done we may find that many patients prefer this option to traditional consultations. 

Please stay safe.   If we all overreact, we may keep this from getting out of control

Sincerely, York J. Yates

Updated 3/16/2020

At Dr. York Yates Plastic Surgery, safety has always been our foremost priority. With the recent coronavirus (COVID-19), new challenges have surfaced. Please know that we are diligently monitoring the COVID-19 situation and the recommendations by the CDC and WHO. I wanted to give an update of what we are doing to ensure your safety, as well as the safety of our staff and families.  

Our primary concerns

We know that social isolation and hand washing are the keys to minimizing the spread of this disease. We are working hard to reduce the number of patients who are seen in our office and limit how many patients would be in our space at a given time. Sanitizing all areas and surfaces between patients is always a priority, but we will perform with even greater urgency at this time. We are asking our staff and patients to monitor for symptoms in themselves closely and stay at home should even a mild symptom arise. Below is an update for specific patient groups.

Online office visits/ rechecks

  • We have technology that allows us to do 95% of our established patient visits from the comfort of their home. At this time, we would prefer every patient to utilize this method of follow up, when possible.  
  • Using the Symplast app, please send photos and questions directly to Dr. Yates. You should expect a reply immediately or within a few hours.
  • As a reminder, the typical follow-up schedule is at day one after surgery, three weeks, three months, and one year after surgery. Certainly, interval (online) visits are allowed if there are any questions or problems.  

In-person visits

  • Some visits, such as consultations, are challenging to do through an online evaluation. In cases where you would prefer an online consultation, this is possible. Let us know
  • Before you visit, verify that you and your household are asymptomatic. Verify by checking your temperature.
  • When you arrive, you will find hand sanitizers at the top of the elevator. Please use them
  • When you arrive, we may verify your temperature
  • Rest assured, I have instructed our staff to stay away from the office if they have even the slightest symptoms. We are checking our temperatures daily
  • We are diligently sanitizing iPads and all sources of contact between every patient
  • We are limiting the number of patients in the waiting room; you should expect a near-empty waiting room experience
  • Visits may be briefer than typical

Out of town patients

  • If the visit can be done virtually, it is preferable.
  • Patients traveling by air should reconsider their visit. We may prefer to reschedule
  • Patients traveling by car, particularly from areas with low coronavirus incidence such as Idaho and Wyoming are a reasonable risk

Surgical patients

  • High-risk patients should consider rescheduling their surgery to a more certain time. These are patients over 60 years old, smokers, patients with heart or lung disease, patients with diabetes, patients with cancer, and patients with BMI over 30
  • Procedures that are higher risk may be postponed. This will be considered on a case by case basis.  I will be looking at every upcoming procedure for concerns I may have
  • I would ask patients with upcoming surgery to practice strict social isolation before surgery and for at least a few days after. It could be problematic for a recovering surgical patient to acquire COVID-19
  • I would ask surgical patients to watch for symptoms of COVID-19 in their household in the days before surgery. Reschedule with any concerns.
  • I have heard patients say that recovering from surgery during this time would be ideal. There is not much going on, and for many, work is slow. Yes, ideal, so long as this is done safely.  

We recognize these are unsettling times. We are focused on your health and safety, above all else. As the situation matures, I will try to provide any additional information and updates that occur. Be safe, be healthy, and use the down-time to your advantage.  

This is a constantly evolving situation.   These updates were written on 03/14/2020.   Should changes to this protocol arise I will attempt to update the situation.  

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