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Coronavirus Safety, Answers, and Next Steps

A Complete Guide to COVID-19 for Fertility Patients

Last Updated: Monday, July 27th 

A Note from Your RMA of CT Family

We are constantly updating the below information as new mandates and recommendations are supplied by the CDC and CT Department of Health. Make sure you bookmark this page so you can stay up to date on all RMA of CT COVID-19 policies and safety regulations. Check out the video below from our Medical Director, Dr. Mark Leondires, for the latest information on the COVID-19 travel advisory.

 

 

First and foremost, we want you to know that your health is our number one priority.

We are taking the Coronavirus (now referred to as COVID-19) seriously, and our patients’ concerns have been heard. We want to personally thank you all for your patience and cooperation during this time. RMA of CT is staying up to date about the role this virus is playing in our day to day lives, and we are doing everything to keep your safety and your fertility treatment our top priority.

IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT: Please review the information below for the latest on how the new travel guidelines may relate to your treatment plan.

If you are currently a patient in treatment and live outside of the tri-state area (CT/NY/NJ), you can expect to hear from your care team regarding our updated protocol to keep your cycle/screening appointment as scheduled. We encourage you to review the complete guide to Connecticut's COVID-19 Travel Advisory, inclusive of FAQs and a list of states that currently affected by this advisory.

Office Hours

Norwalk:
7:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Monday - Friday, Weekends by appointment only

Danbury & Trumbull:
7:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Monday - Friday

Stamford:
6:45 AM – 3:00 PM
Monday - Friday

We are back to regular weekday hours. All visits will need to be by appointment only. No walk-in will be permitted. Please call for an appointment or speak to your nurse via email or telephone with questions.

Upon arrival at our office, please stay in your car. Our check-in process is now via text so as to limit the number of people in the office at one time. Please follow the prompts you will receive on the day of your appointment and only proceed into the office when notified.

Current COVID-19 procedure plan:

  • All patients and staff will be required to wear a cloth face covering. We ask that you please bring your own. This can be a mask, scarf, bandana, etc. Check out this video we made explaining how to make one at home! No sewing required.
  • Telehealth consultations are still being conducted for all new patient appointments, and other services like nutrition, genetic counseling, emotional support, fertility coaching, and fertility counseling.
  • Upon arrival at the office, everyone (including staff) will be screened. This includes taking your temperature, checking on your history of COVID-19 connections, and asking about any COVID-19 symptoms you may be experiencing. We will also ask you to wash your hands once in the office.
  • Unfortunately, partners and other support persons cannot accompany you for any visit to the office or come into the waiting room at this time.
  • If you are undergoing any surgical procedures that require anesthesia, you must be tested for COVID-19. Your clinical team will help you coordinate those details.

In addition to these new policies and procedures, below, we do our best to give you all the facts about the status of COVID-19, including the following:

We will continue to monitor the situation and make adjustments to the plan as needed. To continue to stay in the loop with all of our practice updates, please bookmark this page.

We are hopeful during this time as we phase back into a new normal, and as always, we wish you health and safety. Thank you for your ongoing patience and understanding as we navigate the best, safest path forward.

 

Sincerely,
Your Fertility Care Team
RMA of Connecticut

Our Safety Plan

Our goal is to do our part in minimizing the spread of the virus while maintaining the needs of our patients.

In order to do that, we have revised how and when we are seeing patients in-person, minimizing traffic and visitors in our waiting rooms and common areas. Non-clinical staff has been set up to work remotely to continue to provide the same great level of support. We continue practicing our already above-standard cleaning protocol. Additionally, we are screening anyone entering the office, making sure no one presents symptoms of COVID-19.

PLEASE NOTE: In an effort to keep everyone safe during this time, and in line with recommendations from the state of CT, we are requiring that you wear a cloth face covering when you enter our offices. It can be any kind of covering: homemade mask, bandana, medical mask, scarf, etc. Thank you in advance for your compliance. 

In-Office Protocol & Procedures

If you are coming into our office for a scheduled appointment, please take note of the following protocol we are enforcing.

  • Morning monitoring will be by appointment only. The goal is to minimize the number of patients in the waiting room at the same time.
  • Show up on time. Not early, not late. This is to make sure there’s no overlapping with our patients, minimizing everyone’s exposure to one another. This keeps you safe, as well as the patient before and after your appointment.
  • Upon arrival, please stay in your car. Our check-in process is now via text so as to limit the number of people in the office at one time. Please follow the prompts you will receive on the day of your appointment and only proceed into the office when notified.
  • Male partners producing specimens will be asked to produce off-site and drop off the specimen at a set time. Collection kits with paperwork will be provided.
  • Only patients will be allowed into the Surgical Suite for retrievals and embryo transfers and any scheduled surgeries. We recommend partners wait in a location outside the facility.
  • Only patients should come into the office for their appointment. Partners and children will not be permitted to wait in the waiting rooms or accompany patients in the exam room or procedure rooms. We kindly ask that they wait in the car, or outside our office.
  • All of our consultations, including new patient appointments, and follow-up visits will be done using Telemedicine via Zoom. Your co-payment, co-insurance, or deductible payments still apply.
  • We have increased our secondary health screening requirements. Upon entry into the office, you will be asked screening questions regarding symptoms and travel history, requested to wash your hands, and have your temperature taken. We reserve the right to send any patient home who has a fever. Patients will be asked to not come to the office if they have cough, fever, shortness of breath or other flu-like symptoms. We also ask that you take your own temperature the morning of your visit, and if it is greater than 99.5 degrees Fahrenheit, please call us to discuss next steps.
  • If you are undergoing any surgical procedures that require anesthesia, you must be tested for COVID-19. Your clinical team will help you coordinate those details

If you have been exposed to anyone with COVID-19, please let us know immediately. We ask the same of our staff. If you have been exposed, you most likely will not be able to continue treatment in your current cycle. We apologize in advance, but we must be safe and follow the regulations set up by state and federal agencies.

We understand that some of these changes may be difficult, but they are necessary to keep everyone safe and maintain our ability to continue to provide fertility care.

Your COVID-19 Fertility Cycle Questions, Answered

Will I need to be tested for COVID-19 to move forward with fertility treatment?

Possibly - we're requiring all patients who are undergoing anesthesia to be tested for the disease (procedures like egg retrievals and other surgeries). Why? Because COVID-19 compromises your respiratory system, and anesthesia can exacerbate that.

Do I have to wear a mask in the office?

Yes, and unfortunately, we cannot let you in the office without one. If you cannot find one to purchase, they are easy to make at home! See our how-to video here.

Are you conducting all appointments in the office now?

We are still using video conferencing for all new patient appointments, nutrition counseling, genetic counseling, emotional support, and fertility coaching. All testing, bloodwork, procedures, and other in-person necessities will be conducted in the appropriate office.

Is my spouse allowed to come to the appointment with me?

Unfortunately, we cannot allow anyone other than the patient into our offices at this time. Of course, spouses and other support persons can attend your telehealth consultations, but for in-office visits, they will need to stay home.

How do I know your office is safe?

That is our top concern, too. Your health and safety, as well as our staff's, is of utmost importance. We are screening our entire staff for signs of COVID-19 every day and are also screening all patients that enter the building. Upon arrival for your appointment, we will ask about your contact with the disease and any symptoms you may be experiencing. Additionally, we will take your temperature, and then finally, we will ask you to wash your hands. As mentioned above, we are also requiring everyone in the office to wear a mask. 

If I become pregnant and then acquire COVID-19, will the baby be in danger?

Presently, there is no evidence that you cannot or should not be pregnant during the COVID-19 outbreak. According to preliminary research, a fetus appears unaffected if a mother acquires COVID-19. But we’ll be completely honest, this is all very new. This research is based on a very small number of women and more information is needed to be sure of anything. However, the initial rounds of results are looking promising for pregnant women everywhere. ASRM and the CDC recommend avoiding pregnancy if you or your partner has COVID-19 or have been exposed simply because of the unknowns, not because of any foreseen adverse reactions. 

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

According to the CDC, people with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms – from mild symptoms to severe illness.

Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. People with these symptoms or combinations of symptoms may have COVID-19:

    • Cough
    • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing 

Or, at least two of these symptoms:

    • Fatigue
    • Fever
    • Headache
    • Congestion or runny nose
    • Nausea or vomiting
    • Diarrhea 
    • Muscle or body aches
    • Sore throat
    • New loss of taste or smell

      *This list does not include all possible symptoms. If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, call your doctor immediately and stay at home.

Should I be nervous?

As a fertility patient, you’ve heard the term “just relax” so many times, you’ve lost count. So, we will never tell you to not be nervous, or to calm down. This outbreak is a big deal, and it seems like it’s all anyone talks about. We completely understand your concerns. What we will say, though, is that we’re here for you.

Please know that we would never advise you to do something you’re not comfortable with or something that’s contraindicated. We are in your corner and are keeping up with the science, technology, and health risks of it all so that we can best care for you and your needs.

Best Preventative Measures

Let’s take every precaution we can so that our patients, staff, and extended families stay safe during this outbreak.

  • When leaving your home, grab a mask and be sure to always keep it on in public settings
  • Wash your hands for 20 seconds with soap and water
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your inner elbow if you sneeze or cough
  • Avoid touching your face
  • Avoid sick individuals, large crowds, and physical contact with others
  • Clean and disinfect your work area and home
  • Avoid non-essential travel and practice social distancing
  • Know if you are in the at-risk population (older adults and people who are immuno-compromised) as those need to be even more vigilant

*Quick note: We are working on innovating our greetings during this time! 🖖🙏👋

Resources

If you have a question about your personal health before coming in for a scheduled appointment or morning monitoring, please call your nurse or navigator.

Otherwise, we recommend staying up to date with the following resources:


If you are interested in booking a virtual appointment at this time, but still have a few questions, please call us at 203-956-2265, or click the button below to submit your question(s).

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