OrthoVirginia’s Response to COVID-19

by OrthoVirginia Team

OrthoVirginia’s Response to COVID-19


At OrthoVirginia, there is nothing more important than the health and well-being of our patients, employees and community. During this time of uneasiness as coronavirus impacts our daily lives, we want to assure you that we remain committed to providing the high quality and compassionate care you have come to expect from your caregivers at OrthoVirginia. We are here for you.

We know you have questions and we hope the following will answer your questions as well as provide peace of mind. These Q&As will be updated regularly as the situation changes and new questions surface.

If you have a question that is not answered below, please do not hesitate to call us - phone numbers are located on this page for your convenience. Better yet, access MyChart for communications with our office.

The OrthoVirginia MyChart webpage and phone app will be an important tool for communications with OrthoVirginia. You will be able to communicate with our office, e-check in (where available), review your lab results and office notes. If you don’t have MyChart, sign up here or learn more.

MyChart offers a travel history questionnaire as part of the e-check-in process. As another safety measure, we are encouraging patients to use the e-check-in option within MyChart.

  1. Sign into MyChart
  2. Click Personal Info
  3. Click Travel History
  4. Answer questions 

Q: What screening criteria is OrthoVirginia following?
A: Following CDC guidelines, all patients, visitors, employees, and physicians entering OrthoVirginia buildings will be screened, including having their temperature taken where available and answering the following questions. Individuals who have a temperature of 100.4°F/38°C or who answer “yes” to any of these questions will be asked to go home and patient appointments will be rescheduled.

  • Have you had a fever of 100.4°F/38°C in the past three days?
  • Do you have a cough, sneezing, sore throat, headache, shortness of breath, or difficulty breathing?
  • Have you gone to any of these places in the past 14 days? Have you been in close contact with anyone who has been to any of these places?
    • Internationally: Any country (except Mexico, Canada, and the Caribbean)
    • Domestically: The states of New York, New Jersey, or Connecticut
  • Have you been in close contact with anyone who has or is suspected of having the coronavirus? (Close contact here means less than 6 feet away for 15 minutes or more.)

Q: Are OrthoVirginia and Ortho On Call open and seeing patients?
A: Yes, we are open. Your musculoskeletal health and fitness is of utmost importance to us. It is as important to us as it is to you to continue leading a healthy and an active lifestyle.

Q: What are you doing to make surgery safe?
Our team’s primary focus during this pandemic has been on creating the safest environment for you to receive care and for our staff to provide care. We are taking numerous precautions, including:

  • Screening and testing all patients, visitors, employees, and visitors for symptoms of coronavirus or other respiratory illnesses, including screening for fever
  • Practicing social distancing as much as possible
  • Limiting the number of guests per patient to one
  • Requiring masks for everyone within our facility who comes into contact with anyone else

At this time we are unable to routinely test all patients and visitors for COVID-19 due to a lack of adequate tests. If the tests become more readily available in the future we will move to provide that testing.

Q: Is it safe for me to keep my appointment? What is OrthoVirginia doing to help? 
A: In accordance with CDC guidelines, OrthoVirginia is following best practices to provide you and our employees with a safe environment.

  • Increased cleaning our offices, waiting and exam rooms. We will be paying close attention to areas that are touched frequently, such as doorknobs.
  • Making hand sanitizer stations available.
  • We are following strict hand washing protocols for all employees.
  • Preemptive patient screening including temperature checks and questions about symptoms and travel for anyone entering our clinics and operatories – all patients, visitors, employees, and providers. The questions are following CDC guidelines. If someone has a temperature of 100.4°F/38°C or higher or answers yes to any of the questions they will be asked to leave. Patient appointments will be rescheduled.
  • Requiring all patients and visitors to bring and wear a mask to their appointment.

  • We are discontinuing use of tablets and kiosks for patient check-in (OrthoVirginia staff use only).
  • Providing patients with options to wait in cars rather than in our lobby areas.
  • We are reducing the number of patients and staff in each office at any one time.

  • We are changing the hours of some offices and temporarily closing others to focus on urgent orthopedic care.

  • Any OrthoVirginia providers or team members who meet any of the CDC exposure guidelines above will be required to follow the CDC guidelines for testing and quarantine.
  • As appropriate, OrthoVirginia has made arrangements for non-clinic staff to work from home as our way to help limit exposure and slow the spread of the virus.
  • We are limiting travel and face-to-face meetings for all employees.

Q: I'm not feeling well. Should I still come for my appointment? 
A: If you’re not feeling well, we strongly encourage you to reschedule your appointment. However, if your orthopedic situation is urgent, please call us in advance so we may be prepared. For non-urgent appointments, rescheduling plays a significant role in helping to slow the spread of any virus whether it is Coronavirus or the flu. Most important, if you reschedule, you WILL NOT be charged a missed visit fee.

Q: Is it okay to bring someone with me to my appointment?
A: As we continue to focus on creating a safe environment for our patients and staff as well as following social distancing guidelines, we are no longer allowing patients to bring guests with them to their appointments with the exception of minor patients, patients with limited mobility or those with extenuating circumstances. If someone needs to accompany the patient, we are limiting patients to one guest. Thank you for your help as we work to keep each other safe and healthy.

Q: Why is OrthoVirginia requiring me to wear a mask to my appointment? What if I don't have a mask?
Do your part to help stop this epidemic by wearing a mask. Many people who have COVID-19 do not have any symptoms. Wearing a mask, along with following the other social distancing protocols like staying at least six feet from people and washing your hands frequently, helps prevent the spread of the disease. If you do not have a mask, the CDC has instructions for no-sew masks or you can watch our instructional videos here.

How to Make a No-Sew Face Mask from a Bandanna

How to Make a No-Sew Face Mask from a Sock

Q: My primary care doctor considers me to be a high-risk patient, but I don't feel sick. Should I reschedule?
A: First and most important, if your orthopedic situation is urgent, please call us in advance so we may prepare and provide the appropriate guidance. Your well-being is our priority. However, the CDC recommends rescheduling your appointment if you meet one of the following criteria:

  • You have symptoms of COVID-19 (fever of 100.4F or greater in the past 3 days, cough, sneezing, sore throat, headache, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing) or have been in close contact with someone who has symptoms
  • You know you have been exposed to COVID-19 or have been in close contact with someone who has been exposed
  • You have recently traveled internationally to any country except Mexico, Canada, or the Caribbean or traveled domestically to any part of the states of New York, New Jersey or Connecticut or have been in close contact with someone who has traveled there
  • You are a high-risk patient* (*defined by CDC as older adults - 60 years or older - or if you have chronic medical conditions like heart disease, diabetes or lung disease)

Please reschedule your appointment and remember, you WILL NOT be charged a missed visit fee.

Q: How will I know if there is a change to my care schedule – consultation appointment, surgery, follow-up, or physical therapy?
A: First, you are always welcome to call us with any questions about your care or care schedule. But, rest assured we will be proactive in all communications related to your care. We do like to remind you about MyChart and the online ease of communicating with us. If you don’t have MyChart, sign up here or learn more. If you’re concerned about an elective surgery being postponed, we have more details in our blog post and Facebook Live.

Q: Some of my other doctors are offering telemedicine visits. Is this something available to me for my orthopedic care?
A: OrthoVirginia offers telemedicine. Visits most appropriate for a telemedicine visit could include post-operative follow-up visits, visits to review MRI and CT results, and visits to check progress or response to a treatment. Telemedicine involves the use of electronic communications such as a computer or phone. If a telemedicine visit is appropriate, our staff is happy to help get you set-up for your telemedicine visit. Many interactions with OrthoVirginia can be managed with MyChart communications or telephone calls and may not require a telemedicine visit. If you don’t have MyChart, sign up here or learn more.

Q: Where can I get updated information from OrthoVirginia? 
A: We are offering several sources for updated information.

Q: Are there things I should be doing that could be helpful during this time? 
A: If you have health concerns beyond orthopedic care, we strongly suggest you talk with your primary care provider. We continue to encourage our patients, employees, friends and family to practice safe and simple behaviors being recommended by the CDC (www.cdc.gov/COVID19) and WHO (https://www.who.int/).

  • Wash your hands (two “Happy Birthday” verses)
  • Avoid placing your hands on your face, mouth, nose or eyes
  • If soap and water are not readily available use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue and throw the tissue in the trash
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Limit your exposure to large crowds

Physical Therapy

Q: I just had surgery and my doctor told me I would need physical therapy for four to six weeks. Is physical therapy still open?
A: Your complete recovery from surgery is of utmost importance to OrthoVirginia. Our physical therapy services are still open. However, we suggest you reach out to your surgeon for his/her recommendation based upon where you are in your recovery as you might be a candidate for at home exercises or telemedicine visit.

Q: I saw on your website you offer telemedicine. Does that include physical therapy?
A: OrthoVirginia is committed to providing the safest and most convenient care during this time, telemedicine is a great option. Your physical therapist will contact you directly about the viability of telemedicine for your specific course of treatment.

Q: My therapist called and told me I’m being transitioned to an at-home program for my therapy. Why is that?
A: Proactively transitioning you to an at-home program is an opportunity to safely practice social distancing while still working on your recovery in the convenience of your home. Your therapist is just a phone call away or if available, a video visit.

Q: I read on the CDC website that part of social distancing is to be 6’ away from anyone. My physical therapist has to help move my body as part of my treatment and isn’t 6’ away, is that safe? Should I reschedule my appointment?
A: Your safety and that of our staff is our number one priority. We are following CDC screening guidelines before anyone – patients and staff – enters our offices to reduce the risk of exposure. If you feel uncomfortable, please talk with your physical therapist for ways to continue your therapy at home or if telemedicine is an option for you. You will NOT be charged for a rescheduled or canceled appointment.

Q: If I feel like I don’t need to come into physical therapy because I can do my exercises at home. Is that okay?
A: Your recovery back to an active lifestyle is most important. We recommend you talk with your doctor first to make sure home exercises are appropriate given the stage of your recovery.