Dr Christina Gonzalez

Dr Christina Gonzalez

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Here’s a great FREE option for testing if you’re sick or have been exposed to Covid
This is an interesting interview about Covid and kids! The podcast is geared towards physicians, but I think a good portion of it is helpful for everyone to hear. (Cheesy cover, solid content 😁)

As always, the best place for you to go with Covid and other health questions is your primary care doctor. They (should) know you and your particular health needs better than a blanket statement on a YouTube video and for SURE better than a politician. If you don’t have a primary care doctor I’d be happy to share more about becoming a Hope Family Medicine patient!

https://youtu.be/vCqqcPguXsA
Today I received a call about a sick toddler and offered to see them this afternoon. Then, when I realized mama needed to walk to the office in below freezing weather to get to the appointment I offered to bring the visit to their home instead 🏡

I love the flexibility #dpc allows me to meet my patients where they are (both literally and figuratively!)

Family medicine the way it was meant to be 💚

#dpcwins #hopefamilymedicine #housecalls #eldoradoks #eldoks #bucoks #familydoctor #familymedicine #samedayappointments #staywarm #augustaks
Good morning! Happy Monday and Happy New Year!

We are off to a rip roaring start of the week and year, but I absolutely have faith things will get better!

I’ve actually lost count of the number of “I think I have Covid” or “I just tested positive for Covid” or “I’m sure it’s not Covid, but…” calls I’ve had in the past week. In fact, the photo below is of my very own positive test (yes I had Covid, yes I’ve been cautious and wore a mask, yes I’ve been vaccinated, and yes I do believe my symptoms were comparably more mild likely because of the vaccine).

This is a long, but easily readable post and I hope it helps if you’re wondering what to do. As always, I am here for you and I’m rooting for you!

************************************************

Hi, I'm back as Robin-Schoenthaler-the-Boston-cancer-doctor-who-writes-about-Covid.

(And it’s okay with me if you want to share this directly from my public FB page.)

Since at least two dozen of my friends and family got Covid this week-end, and the hits just keep on coming, tonight’s missive is an updated revised version of my previous guide on managing Covid infections.

PLEASE go stock up your Covid kits. A large number of us are going to get Covid in the next couple of weeks so get your gear TODAY. In fact, go buy your oximeter TONIGHT.

And get home testing kits. I know we Americans aren’t used to scarcity and there’s a tendency to shrug one’s shoulders and say, “I couldn’t find them anywhere,” but the reality is, places run out, yes, but then they restock.

Every morning (in your spare time) just wake up and check on-line and neighborhood drug stores and big stores. Every night before bed, check again. Tests are out there; you just have to be persistent and ready to jump.

Okay, you got the dreaded email/phone call/pink line: your Covid test is positive.

For most tests, positive is essentially positive; there’s not many “false positives.”

On the other hand, if you’ve had a negative home test, it could be wrong, i.e., a “false negative.” If you’re symptomatic or had a high-risk exposure and really think you have Covid, you might consider doing a *throat* swab. We’re hearing more and more reports of throat tests turning positive before the nasal test does and there’s some emerging science showing it, too. The data is still too early for this to be part of formal guidelines but it makes sense to me and I’m now throat swabbing myself.

A positive test for most people is a rough moment but let’s put things into perspective.

First off, why did you get it? You got it because:

a) a few days ago you were exposed to somebody who was infected and

b) the vaccine’s impact is declining; it is now around 35%

c) getting a BOOSTER, however, increases protection to around 75%.

Are you in danger? If you are unvaccinated you have a thirteen times higher chance of dying of Covid than if you are vaccinated.

Fortunately the vaccines still do a fantastic job protecting most vaccinated people from anything much more than cold symptoms.

Two caveats:

1) The positive test means you are infected and infectious and you need to stay home for at least five days after your positive test. Then if you feel better and your symptoms are resolving, you can leave home — but you still need to be meticulous about masking for five more days.

2) If you have major medical issues and are at risk to get serious Covid or are profoundly immunosuppressed, you should call your doctor to see if you qualify for monoclonal antibodies or antivirals even though they are being rationed right now. Some docs are also using an anti-depressant called fluvoxamine.

But if you are unvaccinated, there is no way of telling what might happen, and you should “prepare for the worst and hope for the best.”

Everybody,

a) Call your doctor and let them know you’re positive.

b) Don’t go to the ER unless your oxygen levels decline (more below) or you can’t keep any fluids down, not even sips. The ERs are overwhelmed and will be for the next few weeks so try and stay out if possible

c) Call everybody you’ve had close contact with. Tell them to test themselves a few days after your contact or immediately if they have any symptoms.

d) Then, get yourself ready to be self-isolated and maybe sick for five days. Time to pull out “The Covid Kit.”

What’s a Covid Kit?

Basically a Covid Kit includes three things: an oximeter, a thermometer and anything that helps you feel better during a cold.

• Do I really need an oximeter? Yes, particularly if you are unvaccinated, have major medical problems or are profoundly immunosuppressed.

• Do I really need a thermometer? Yes! Everybody should have a thermometer. “Feeling hot” is not enough — you need to know your temp and its fluctuations!

• What else helps during a bad cold? I personally like throat lozenges, cough medicine, tylenol/ibuprofen/naproxen, some herbal teas, chicken soup, a tiny bit of bourbon, and an updated subscription to Netflix. Some people like Gatorade and Nyquil, too.

• What else do I need to figure out ahead of time?

1) Where are you going to sleep/stay so you are isolated from everybody else? (Even more important with Omicron)

2) Who can go to the store for meds or food?

3) How are you going to get fed?

4) Who can watch and feed the kids and keep them away from you?

5) Who will help you decide if/when it’s time to go to the hospital?

6) Which Netflix shows are you going to binge?

Just like with all viruses, rest, hydration, and symptom relievers are key.

But there’s a couple of extra things with Covid, particularly if you are unvaccinated or have major medical issues:

• It’s helpful to lay on your stomach (“prone”) as much as possible to improve breathing and oxygen levels, especially if you’re feeling short of breath or congested.

• It’s probably helpful to walk around the house taking deep breaths once an hour, to open up your lungs and maybe reduce blood clots.

• It is very important to keep checking your oxygen with the pulse oximeter in your Covid Kit. If it starts to steadily decline, call your doctor’s office. If it stays below 95 (from 100), get ahold of your doctor; you may need to go to an ER. Incidentally, smart watch oxygen measurements don’t seem as reliable as pulse oximeters.

• What else might help? There’s still no clear data on zinc, melatonin, vitamin C, Pepcid, Vitamin D. Most of these fall into the “probably can’t hurt, maybe might help?” category so ask your doc.

• If you’re unvaccinated or a person at risk for severe disease (defined by CDC as certain chronic illnesses (lung, heart, obesity, diabetes, age >65, etc, etc ), you should be talking to your doctor about the monoclonal antibody Sotrovimab and/or antivirals Paxlovid and Molnupiravir. These are unfortunately in very short supply right now and are being rationed but call your doc.

It’s important to remember that most of us who are vaccinated will experience Covid as a mild or medium illness, and never end up needing to go to the hospital.

But there’s a small subset of people (~15%) who get markedly worse, usually around the second week. Getting a lot sicker means call your doctor or the ER.

Finally, a common question about “getting it over with:”

“Two people in my house have Covid. The other people in our family are vaccinated. Should we just go ahead and try and catch Covid from them since it feels inevitable?”

In any other month I would just call this a gamble. Anybody who deliberately exposes themselves to Covid is taking a calculated risk about whether they end up being part of the small percentage of vaccinated people who:

— still get severe disease or end up needing to be hospitalized

— or end up with Long Covid

— or who accidentally infect Aunt Petunia when they take her to her podiatrist.

But this month is a particularly bad month for a gamble. This month we have sky-rocketing cases, decimated medical staffs, lots of hospitals with no ER space or ICU beds, and we’ve essentially got no drugs.

So, no, I don’t think this is the month to take that particular gamble. As our beloved Kenny Rogers wrote, “You've got to know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em, know when to walk away, and know when to run.”

So no, this is not a good month to gamble on the chances your particular Covid infection will be mild. Maybe another month when you can get a bed in an ER and be seen by a healthy doc and get handed an antiviral prescription that’s easy to fill. That’s coming, maybe February, maybe March.

But not this month. This is not a good month to fold ‘em. This is a good month to hold ALL the cards — the masking, the distancing, the every possible protection — every single one.
Wow, how the weather has changed!

This is the time of year where things seem to fly by at lightning speed. We are well into open enrollment season for health care.

Have you thought much about changing plans? Certainly a lot has changed in the health care landscape and now is a great time (possibly the only time of the year) to evaluate if your plan best serves your needs.

Have questions about which plan pair best with a DPC membership? I’m happy to chat!

#nofilter #fallfoliage #dpc #directprimarycare #hopefamilymedicine #openenrollment #healthinsurance #primarycare #marketplace #healthcare #familydoctor #eldoks #eldoradoks #augustaks

I’m a wife, a mom, and a doctor in El Dorado, KS. There is a ton of health information floating ar

Operating as usual

09/20/2022

Whoa! This is from 2009 but feels like a lifetime ago! At the beach after a long hard six weeks taking care of patients on a medical mission to Ghana, Africa. For point of reference, we were a 45 minute WALK away from the nearest ELECTRICITY!

This was such a great learning experience because we were the first group of med students to go as part of a new Global Health Certificate Program and played a large part in shaping the program and paving the way with a brand new clinic in rural Oworobong Ghana.

Going there the possibility of becoming a missionary doctor full time after training was not off the table. Small Town USA seems like the furthest cry possible, but in many many ways I can draw parallels both in the disease processes I’ve seen and the life skills I’ve picked up from helping organize many trips and clinics. Wound care technique, communicating across cultural and language barriers, stocking a dispensary, developing protocols, and on and on.

Thankful for photo memories to help me be able to look back and appreciate all the little things that helped prepare the way for Hope Family Medicine.

09/15/2022

Here’s your opportunity to voice your opinions! In our own family we have now gone through 2 daycares and 2 nannies in just 4 years (I promise it’s through no fault of our kiddos 🤣)

Several community stakeholders are attempting to understand the daycare issue in El Dorado so the community can help develop a solution. The data gathered from this survey will help us understand the specific needs of the community. Please complete this child care survey before noon on Sept. 21. Feel free to share the link with others you know who may have an interest in child care. Information collected will be confidential. You can take the survey at: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/56GTGHH

09/12/2022

Wow. It will take more than 1 post to unpack all that’s going on in this article, but I’ll try to be succinct. A fellow direct care doctor shared this and I feel it’s worth unpacking because it covers some common misconceptions.

I’m going to take the assumption that the author meant the absolute best by this, and just fell waaaay short of finding the answers.

1. Note the name of the publishing journal. Res Ipsa Loquitor! (The thing speaks for itself… always consider any bias of the source of your i fo)
2. While I’m not a “middle-age white male”, I am proof that the days of black bag 💼 housecalls are NOT long gone!
3. I’m confused as to how the “solution” for primary care doctors being too busy and underpaid is to, according to this article, either a) make them lead a large team of staff, thus leading to even less patient interaction or b) eliminate the profession altogether
4. I wholeheartedly agree with the final paragraph, which is maybe the single most important thing we can do to “save” primary care!

Direct Primary Care, which is the payment model I’ve chosen for Hope Family Medicine, is not the whole solution, but it’s a big part of the solution. And it’s one thing that I, as a primary care physician, can do the affect change at a grassroots “we’re not gonna take this anymore” level.

08/30/2022

We are now a few weeks in to the beginning of school… hard to believe! It still feels like we should be summer livin’. If you’re like us, it’s been a *bit* of an adjustment. As much as you may have prepped it’s still a lot of NEW: new schedule, new routines, new teachers, new friends, new learning (for parents too!) So let this be a reminder that it is NORMAL if your little darling turns in to a gremlin or sloth as soon as they get home. Give them some grace, maybe stick with some easy and familiar dinners, go to bed early, and give everyone—including you/your spouse—some grace. We’ll get there. We’ve got this!

08/23/2022

Opportunity for free skin cancer screening in town!

Thursday, September 15 Dr. Harrison will host a free skin cancer screening at the SBA Cancer Center, 700 W. Central, in El Dorado from 4-6pm.

Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the US. 4.3 million adults are treated for basal cell and squamous cell carcinoma. Make plans for attend the free skin cancer screening on September 15.

http://www.sbamh.com/clinics/radiation_oncology

Photos from Dr Christina Gonzalez's post 08/18/2022

My favorite meal to cook after a busy day?

“What can I throw together from the fridge?” Don’t take any lessons from me on meal-planning. More often than not my first thought about dinner is on the way to pick up the kids after work. But I am pretty darn good at throwing a bunch of ingredients together into 1 pan in a way that the whole family enjoys. Last night it was frozen and fresh veggies and ground beef with a little instant rice (not ideal, but see above 😆) and seasoning. I love these kinds of meals because you can adjust ratios so easily based on your needs and available ingredients, quick to make AND clean up (only 1 pan to wash 😁) and super affordable! Bonus: everything is so mixed in that kids aren’t trying to pick out only the parts they want.

Timeline photos 08/12/2022

It’s back to school time! (still so hard to believe when it’s 90+ outside 🥵)

Love the graphic on ways to deal with school stress shared by South Central Mental Health.

Notice how much of the tip focus on 1. Slowing down and not trying to cram too much into the day 2. Taking care of our bodies

Great tips for kids AND for adults!

08/11/2022

We had a birthday in our home!
A little unsolicited parenting advice from a physician-mom: Don’t overthink it! Somehow a pack of toothbrushes wound up in the presents bag and those were fought over just as much as all the other present 😂 Trying to create a Pinterest worthy party with tons of great presents just leads to more stress which can cause: anxiety, heartburn, acne, high blood pressure… the list goes on.

Granted, the kids will go through seasons where a toothbrush won’t cut it, but my point is if you’re going to plan a big party (we’ve done them and will do more too) make sure you’re doing it for the right reasons and that the process is enjoyable. We’ve all got enough stress as it is 😉

08/09/2022

Scenario: you wake up with a sore throat and feel like you’ve been hit by a Mack truck. What if you could text your doctor, see her the same day, be diagnosed with an in house rapid strep test which is included in your membership, and walk out the door with antibiotic in hand for just a few pennies more? Well…

Welcome to Hope Family Medicine!

08/06/2022

Hello... It's me again! Hoping to break the long hiatus I've had from social media. It's FRIDAY, so I want to encourage you to do something FUN! We snuck over to the Main Street Splash Pad after work yesterday and while the kids played I checked out the new sign there highlighting many of the parks and activities in town. One thing I found great was the way you could see the walking and bike paths between different locations. What about taking a walk or dusting off your bike and taking the kids for a ride out by the lake or to the park? I LOVE activities that include fun for both parents and kids AND don't cost a dime.

05/04/2022

You are welcome here!
One of the joys of owning my own practice is that I am able to implement some of the ideas I’ve envisioned over the years (and adding more over time!) It is SO important feeling comfortable when you go to the doctor. It’s amazing how our bodies respond to stress. There’s even a medical term that many are familiar with, called “white coat syndrome”, where a patients blood pressure rises just because they are at the doctors office… even if they don’t feel stressed out!

Here at Hope Family Medicine there’s coffee, tea, comfy couches, and unhurried visits. This allows me the opportunity to really hear what you have to say, leading to better results and fewer needs for referrals and interventions!

04/14/2022

I stopped by the office last night for something and was able to take a moment to pause (with a sleeping babe in the back seat 💗) and reflect on this practice and what it means to me, my family, and—I truly believe—our community as well.

There is so much broken in health care. The pandemic highlighted and emphasized some of the cracks in the foundation of our American health care system. Don’t get me wrong… I love our country and there are so so many absolutely amazing people working in healthcare, including in our community here. But we’re working in and against so many inefficiencies and injustices. My patients know I have to reign it in when I start talking too long about the double edged sword of insurance or the government’s involvement in health care. (This post is not for that, feel free to ask me in private if you want to know more about what I mean.)

As doctors we get can get bone tired and discouraged. We went into this profession with a unique mix of attributes that include being detailed, driven, capable of very very delayed gratification, and yet also loving people, being fixers, having empathy. It makes us easy targets for unscrupulous folks and also means we have a higher rate of burnout, depression, and suicide. It’s probably the reason health care is a mess… because we were focused on caring for broken bodies and not on lobbying and not noticing the third parties creeping in for larger and larger unchecked pieces of the pie. I’m thankful I never got to the point of burnout that many of my colleagues have reached since the direct care concept was introduced to me so early on.

The direct care movement is truly trying to remedy this on many levels and I’m proud to be a direct primary care doctor. I can’t fathom a better name for this practice.

04/05/2022

Ochna Health | Health Cost Sharing 2022 Edition

This is a great resource for anyone looking for a viable alternative to expensive and restrictive health insurance plans for their catastrophic needs. Some people think cost sharing programs are too complicated, but in my experience they have been much more straightforward than dealing with insurance for those major medical expenses. Bonus: several programs now offer a huge discount if you have a DPC doctor like me! I think that’s a testament to our value.

(This is a yearly updated comparison of several programs a fellow DPC practice puts out. Feel free to share!)

Ochna Health | Health Cost Sharing 2022 Edition Health Health Cost Sharing 2022 Edition April 4, 2022 by drnguyen in Health The very concept for and purpose of insurance is to protect one against unpredictable and large expenses, such as damage to your vehicle from an accident, or to your home from a hurricane. In health care where there is virtu...

04/01/2022

This is exciting for our hospital and our community! I’ve given many of my patients a heads up about this positive change and I’m now we can share publicly!

Help us welcome Western Healthcare as our new physician partner! Beginning in April, they will provide full-time, 24-hour physician services in our Emergency and Hospitalist Departments!

Videos (show all)

Friday Musings
Virtual open house Thursday 12/17 at 11am!
Thank you and Announcing Virtual Open House
Covid Update
Hope Family Medicine Update

Location

Telephone

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119 N Vine
El Dorado, KS
67042

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