Letter to the editor by Dr. Ronald F. Giffler, MD, JD, MBA and President of the Florida Medical Association

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Now that Gov. Ron DeSantis has lifted the prohibition on elective procedures in Florida, it is important for individuals who have been putting off important tests and treatments to see their physicians for the care they need.

To prevent a second healthcare crisis, people need to know that physician practices have reopened throughout the state with protocols in place to ensure that patients are cared for safely.

The Florida Medical Association, along with the American Medical Association and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, have provided guidelines and checklists for physicians, from requiring patients to wear face coverings to limiting non-patient visitors, and screening patients before in-person visits.

Postponing care because of the COVID-19 crisis puts patients at high risk for complications later and eventually could cause a treatable condition to become untreatable. The resulting complications could end up being worse than the COVID-19 disease.

Ronald Giffler is president of the Florida Medical Association