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COVID-19 Update

If you have been exposed or diagnosed with the COVID-19 virus, do NOT panic. 82% of cases are mild and much like a common cold and the overall survival rate is 98%. However there are certain people who can be at increased risk of having a more serious reaction to the virus. Fortunately 3 vaccines have been approved by the FDA and are currently being administered. The vaccines are 90% effective in preventing severe infection and hospitalization. Being fully vaccinated is now considered having an initial vaccination series then being boostered by either Pfizer or Moderna vaccines. However, even if you have been vaccinated or have had COVID-19,  it is important you continue to wear your mask and socially distance when in public to help protect those who cannot be vaccinated. 

  1. At this time anyone with symptoms of COVID-19 should be tested. Symptoms of Covid-19 can include, but not limited to: respiratory symptoms, fever, sore throat, congestion, loss of taste or smell, fatigue, nausea, vomiting, body aches, headache

  2. Those people who have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for the Covid-19 virus. The health department will contact you if you have been listed as a “direct contact.”

  3.  Many states and countries are requiring proof of negative testing prior to entry.  Please check to make sure which test you need, i.e. PCR vs Rapid Antigen.  You can walk-in or make an appt online for testing. 

  4. Due to the nature of COVID-19,  it is impossible to differentiate  between this virus and the common cold or sinus infection.  To  ensure we are treating you correctly,  as well as helping protect our community and loved ones,  anyone with any suspicious symptoms will be tested. 

  5. Because of the high volume of phone calls, our staff are unable to answer the phone at our Russell location. You are welcome to leave a message but it could take up to 1-3 days to receive a return call. If you do need to be tested, click HERE to schedule an appointment online.  We are only testing patients at our Russell location. Many times we can simply do a telemedicine visit and curb-side COVID testing right in your vehicle!  Our walk-in clinic on Russell Street is located across from the YMCA.  Current clinic hours are:

    Monday through Friday:  8am-6pm  

    Saturday and Sunday:  9am-2pm

If you have symptoms or have been exposed,  you need to remain on self quarantine” until the test results are available. If the test returns positive, whether you are vaccinated or unvaccinated,  you need to remain home and isolate yourself from people and even pets. The health department will be notified of your positive test result and they will reach out to you. This may take a few days as they are extremely busy.  If the test is negative, then you can presume you do not have Coronavirus. 

Vaccinated individuals exposed and do not have symptoms: No quarantine required.  PCR testing advised at 3-5 days or anytime you develop symptoms. You are still advised to wear a mask in enclosed spaces and socially distance. 

Unvaccinated individuals exposed and do not have symptoms :  You must quarantine for a full 10 days OR self quarantine  and obtain a PCR test on day 5. You may stop quarantine after day 7 if you remain without symptoms and your test is negative.

Positive COVID-19 test: Vaccinated or unvaccinated must quarantine for 10 days or 14 days if you continue to have symptoms at day 10.

The most common complication of the Covid-19 infection is pneumonia. You may want to consider purchasing a pulse oximeter to monitor your oxygen levels. You can purchase a pulse oximeter at our office for $20 or at Walmart, Walgreens or CVS. If your oxygen levels are approaching 90%, you will need to be seen either at our walk in clinic or the Emergency Room.

The most important thing is not to spread the virus to other people. You must remain home until you have been released from self quarantine.  See the section “When am I no longer on self quarantine.”  Treatment for mild to moderate infection is discussed below.  Ensure you have medications to help with symptoms.

Yes, there is a medication called Regeneron which consists of monoclonal antibodies. These antibodies target the Covid-19 virus specifically. This medication can help you clear the virus more quickly and possibly decrease your risk of being hospitalized. The treatment involves 4 small injections given at the same time. You are then monitored for one hour and released home. Click HERE to learn more about Regeneron, This medication is reserved for those who have tested postive for the Coivd-19 virus and are 65 and over or 16-64 yo with at least one of the listed conditions:  

Type 1 or 2 Diabetes

Chronic lung disease including moderate to severe asthma, emphysema, interstitial lung disease, pulmonary hypertension, sarcoidosis, cystic fibrosis

Obesity (BMI >30)

Receiving immunosuppressive therapy (steroids, chemotherapy, medications used to treat autoimmune disease such as Humira, Methotrexate)

Immunosuppressive diseases (HIV)

Cardiovascular disease (including congenital heart disease)

High blood pressure

Chronic kidney disease

You must also be within 10 days from the first day your symptoms started.

If you feel you qualify and would like to pursue this treatment, please send an email to lesley.voneschen@costcare.com. Please include your name, DOB and under what diagnosis listed above you qualify. We will then schedule you for a treatment appointment.

We will bill your insurance for the treatment. If you are a medicare patient, DPC or paying cash, the cost of the treatment is $200. We are unable to bill medicare for the treatment.

  1. You can schedule an appt online or walk in for asymptomatic travel testing.  Our location on Great Northern Loop (near Missoula Bone and Joint off of Mullan Rd) will perform testing M-F 9am -3pm. Weekend travel testing will be done at our Russell location (across from the YMCA) Sat and Sun from 9am-2pm. 
  2. Results take 24-48 hours to return M-F.  The lab is closed on Saturdays and Sundays so any testing done after 12pm on Friday will not be available until Monday evening. Testing done before noon on Friday will be available Friday evening.
  3. We do PCR testing for travel
  4. You are notified of your results through our secure email system Elation Passport. Ensure you have the needed information to get signed up at your testing appt. 
  5. Testing cost is $85 to be paid at the time of service. We do not bill insurance for this service.