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Don’t Forget About Your Mental Well-Being

Don’t Forget About Your Mental Well-being

In these last couple of months, we’ve all had to adjust our way of life one way or another.  Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us are facing a great deal of uncertainty our mental well-being is at risk.

These days it seems there are just too many things weighing on our minds.  We now worry about the health and safety of our loved ones more. Most of us spend countless sleepless nights thinking about our family’s financial stability and, of course, our job security.

To this, we must add the pressure to maintain social distance, feelings of isolation, and boredom. All these things can leave us feeling scared, confused, angry, irritable, stressed, and anxious.

While all these emotions are valid and expected in a time of crisis, they can take a toll on our mental well-being, and ultimately affect us physically as well.

For this reason, we need to recognize the signs of mental distress and find effective ways to deal with them.

Here we share some simple tips to help you cope with stress and anxiety. These tips can be helpful whenever we are feeling overwhelmed, not only during these trying times.

1. Create a Daily Schedule

During this stay in place ordinance, days can easily become a blur, and soon you will have trouble even knowing which day it is.

Planning your day, which might include a to-do list will give you a sense of purpose and help you feel in control.

However, remember to set achievable goals; otherwise, your to-do list will become another source of stress.

While you plan your day, make sure to set apart some time for a fun activity. It could be doing an online yoga class, reading a book, doing an arts and crafts project alone, or with your kids. It doesn’t need to be a fancy activity; it just needs to be fun for you!

 

2. Reach Out and Connect

Humans need social interaction, whether it’s a little or a lot; we all need to feel connected to someone or our community.

Social distancing is necessary to try and stop the spread of COVID-19. Still, thankfully we live in an era where technology allows us to connect with those we love easily.

Many apps allow us to video chat with friends, and even a simple phone call can put us at ease knowing our friends and family are hanging in there and are out of harm’s way.

Having someone reach out to see how you are doing can help ease the feelings of loneliness and isolation.

So please reach out and connect, you could make someone’s day brighter.

How Can I Get Tested for the Coronavirus?

3. Look for Credible Sources to Stay Informed

The amount of information available to us regarding COVID-19 can be overwhelming. Most of the news we see is negative and scary, and to make matters worse, a lot of it is fake.

There is no shortage of conspiracy theories and fake science on the internet, and it’s not always easy telling the real stories from the fake.

All these stories only add to the stress we are already feeling. To avoid being bombarded with fake information, only follow sites managed by local and federal health authorities such as the and trusted news sites.

As an example, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides accurate information and helpful guidance to deal with the stress caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

4. Stay Active and Healthy

Staying home doesn’t mean you have to sit on the couch all day. There are plenty of physical activities you can enjoy while still maintaining the necessary social distance.

You can go for a walk around your neighborhood, join an online workout class, or even spend some time in your prettying up your yard.

You should also avoid eating junk food or drinking alcohol in excess.

Need Help?  Rural County Contacts

5.  Don’t Forget About Your Spiritual Needs

Many of us miss going to church on Sunday, but that shouldn’t stop us from addressing our spiritual needs.

Our religious beliefs provide great solace in times of distress, and if you find comfort in prayer, dedicate a few minutes a day to this practice.

You can organize an online bible reading group, or schedule a meeting with a spiritual counselor, pastor, or priest who can provide some guidance and help you through these tough times.

Remember, God is everywhere.

Altus Emergency Centers remain open to support you and your loved ones in these trying times. We continue to work closely with community leaders and health officials to ensure the safety and wellbeing of the people we serve.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

Pet Safety During COVID-19

Pet Safety During COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic is all over the news, and you’ve probably already read all our safety tips and guidelines.

Now it’s time to talk about the furry members of our family. We’ve received many questions regarding the safety of your pets and having them around your family.  “What about Fido?” Let’s learn about pet safety during COVID-19.

Here we hope to clarify as much as possible all your questions. The information used to answer the following questions comes from the US Department of Agriculture. We recommend you visit their website for more details https://www.usda.gov/coronavirus.

Furry friends Pet Safety During COVID-19

Can I get COVID-19 from my pet or other animals?

One of the first questions of concern about pet safety during COVID-19, was pet to human contamination.  From what we know so far, there is little chance that your pet or farm animal can spread the virus that causes COVID-19.

There have been a few reports of pets and zoo animals testing positive for the SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. However, in all cases, the animals had close contact with a person who was already sick with COVID-19.

To avoid your pets getting infected with the virus, the authorities recommend you follow these guidelines:

  • Limit the interaction your pets have with people or other animals outside of your home
  • Walk your dog with a leash and maintain a distance of at least 6-feet between them and other people or animals
  • Avoid going to the dog park and other public places where many people and dogs gather
  • Keep your cat indoors as much as possible

How Can I Get Tested for the Coronavirus?

If I get sick with COVID-19, could I infect my pet with the virus?

There’s still a lot we don’t know about the virus, but there is evidence that sick humans could infect their pets and other animals.

For now, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that anyone who is sick with COVID-19 avoid or limit their contact with animals until more is known.

If you are sick, you ask a healthy family member or friend to take care of your pets until you are healthy again.

Cats Pet Safety During COVID-19

Need Help?  Rural County Contacts

Can pets carry the virus that causes COVID-19 on their skin or fur?

We know pets can carry certain bacteria and fungi on their fur and hair. However, there is no evidence that viruses, including the one that causes COVID-19, can spread to people from the skin, coat, or hair of pets.

Since we do know pets can carry germs that can be harmful to our health, it’s always good to wash your hands before and after you interact with them.

Which animals can get COVID-19?

The first confirmed case of an animal infected with SARS-CoV-2 in the United States was a tiger living in a New York zoo.

We also know of a few cases where dogs and cats have tested positive after having close contact with a person sick with COVID-19.

Researchers have concluded that ferrets, cats, and golden Syrian hamsters can get infected with the virus and spread it to other animals from the same species.

The same study found that pigs, chickens, and ducks did not become infected or spread the infection to other animals.

Hamsters Pet Safety During COVID-19

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

At Altus Emergency Centers, we know how important pets can be to our families. While we can’t treat them in our ER’s we encourage you to take all the necessary precautions to help keep them safe.

If your pet shows any signs of respiratory problems, or if you suspect they have the virus that causes COVID-19, speak to your veterinary immediately.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

Right Way to Use Protective Gear for COVID-19

The Right Way to Use Protective Gear for COVID-19

The question of Protective Gear for COVID-19.  The fear of COVID-19 infection has us scrambling for information on how to keep ourselves and our loved ones safe.

However, there is much confusion among the community about the best ways to protect ourselves and our loved ones. What’s the right way to use protective gear for COVID-19?

So, to help clarify some of the most common doubts, we’ve prepared an informative Q&A with some of the questions we get asked the most.

How Can I Get Tested for the Coronavirus?

Can a Face Mask Protect Me from Getting Infected?

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is now recommending that everyone, even seemingly healthy people, wear face masks when out in public.

There is a lot of debate on whether face masks can prevent infection or not. One thing we do know is that they can help show the spread of the virus.

Many people who carry the virus never develop symptoms, so they may not know they have it, yet they can spread the virus to others. Wearing face coverings can significantly reduce the number of droplets expelled when we breathe or talk, and this means fewer chances for the infection to spread.

Types of Face Masks

There many types of face coverings, but not all of them are good choices for preventing the spread of COVID-19.

 

N95 Masks

The N95 mask used by healthcare workers is the most effective at preventing viral spread. When properly fitted, the cover seals tightly to the face and filters out 95% of particles.

The problem is that there is a severe shortage of N95 masks at the time. Even healthcare workers who are caring for COVID-19 patients have a hard time finding these masks.

 

Surgical Masks

There is also a short supply of surgical masks; therefore, the CDC does not recommend them for the general public. Aside from being hard to find, they aren’t as effective as the N95’s for several reasons:

  1. They don’t have non-woven polypropylene layers that resist moisture.
  2. About 70% of the outside air moves through the mask, but the other 30% travels unfiltered through the sides.

 

Fabric Masks

Fabric masks are the CDC’s preferred choice for the general public.  These masks are low cost; you can make them at home using household materials and fabrics, and the best part is they are reusable.

The CDC states that a fabric face covering should:

  • Fit comfortably yet tightly against the sides of your face
  • Be made from multiple layers of fabric
  • Have ties or ear loops to secure it
  • Allow you to breathe without restriction
  • Made from a material that can be machined washed and dried without being damaged or have it change in shape

You should not use face covering on children under the age of two or anyone who has trouble breathing.

Need Help?  Rural County Contacts

How Should I Care for My Cloth Face Mask?

You should wash your cloth face-covering frequently, depending on how often you use it. Just place it in the washer machine and use the same detergent you use for your other clothes.

How to Properly Put on a Face Mask?

There are several simple steps to follow to make sure you are using your face covering correctly.

  1. Wash your hands with soap and water before you put on a mask
  2. Place the mask on your face making sure it covers your mouth and nose. Ensure there are no gaps between your face and the mask
  3. Avoid touching the mask while you are wearing it. If you do immediately wash your hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer
  4. Replace the mask with a different one as soon as you notice it is damp. Never reuse a single-use mask.
  5. Always remove the mask from behind, don’t touch the front of the mask as you could inadvertently touch your face. Wash the cloth face mask as soon as you remove it. If you are using a single-use mask, dispose of it immediately after using it.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Should You Wear Gloves When Out in Public?

Experts are also having a heated debate on whether using gloves is an effective way to prevent contagion.

The problem with gloves is you can still pick up the virus, and if you happen to touch your face or you touch the exterior of the glove while removing it, you can still have contact with the virus.

Even if you wear gloves, you still must wash your hands after you remove them.

Social Distancing Guidelines

The best way to stop the spread of the virus is to practice social distancing. Here is how you can do it:

  • Avoid crowded places
  • Avoid handshakes, hugs, and kisses when greeting people
  • Keep a distance of at least 2-arm lengths (6.5 feet) between you and other people
  • Try not to go shopping or use public transportation during peak hours
  • Exercise at home or outside away from other people
  • Stay home as much as possible

As members of a community, it is our responsibility to do everything we can to help flatten the curve of COVID-19.

 

At Altus Emergency Centers, we recommend you inform yourself only from trusted sources, such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to avoid misinformation.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

What to Do If You Think You Have COVID-19

What to Do If You Think You Have COVID-19

The novel coronavirus and the illness it causes known as COVID-19 is making its way to our area. However, one of the best things we can do to protect ourselves and those around us is to stay calm and think before we act.

Before you rush to the ER, stop, and evaluate your situation, don’t let anxiety take over.

How Can I Get Tested for the Coronavirus?

What’s Wrong with Me?

Stop and think about your symptoms; there’s a good chance your symptoms are the result of the common cold.

If you have a runny nose, itchy eyes, and other mild symptoms, it could be just a cold. In this case, the best thing to do is to stay home and monitor your symptoms.

 

You should seek medical help when you have one or more of the following symptoms:

  • Persistent cough,
  • A high fever, and
  • Any sort of respiratory distress such as shortness of breath,

But Stop!

Need Help?  Rural County Contacts

Call Your Doctor Before You Go to the ER

Covid-19 and the flu virus share similar symptoms, so don’t panic. Call your primary care doctor and explain your symptoms in detail.

Your healthcare provider can assess your symptoms over the phone; they can also look into your travel history, and answer many of your concerns.

If your doctor suspects you have COVID-19, but your symptoms are mild, and you don’t have any underlying chronic illnesses such as heart problems, high blood pressure, asthma, or diabetes, they will probably recommend you self-quarantine at home.

 

If your doctor suspects you have COVID-19, but your symptoms are mild, remember to:

  • Wear a face mask when you are around others
  • Wash your hands frequently
  • Disinfect countertops, and other surfaces frequently
  • Avoid sharing plates, glasses, and other utensils
  • Keep a minimum distance of 6 feet between you and other people
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue, throw the tissue in the trash immediately afterward
  • Stay home as much as possible

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

What About the ER

Going to the ER is not necessary if your symptoms are mild. A visit to the ER should be reserved for those who have severe symptoms and worsening shortness of breath, or when pneumonia develops.

At this time, only public health laboratories certified under the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments of 1988 (CLIA) can test for coronavirus infections and the illness it causes COVID-19.

If your symptoms warrant a trip to an Altus Emergency Centers, know that we are equipped and prepared to treat you with well-trained personnel. Although we cannot test you on site, we can collect samples and send them to an authorized lab for testing upon approval of the Health Department.  Results take typically 48-72 hours to return.

 

Testing criteria includes having fever, cough, shortness of breath AND:

  • prior close contact to someone that tested positive for COVID-19,
  • prior travel to a location with ongoing transmission of COVID-19,
  • having risk factors for getting very sick from COVID-19, or
  • being hospitalized with COVID-19 symptoms even if you do not have any risk factors.

Call Us Before Hand, and Follow the Safety Protocol

The safety of our patients and staff is our number one priority. The novel coronavirus is highly contagious, and therefore, we kindly ask you to call ahead of time if you believe you are infected. This way, we can take all the necessary precautions to keep you, our patients, and our staff safe.

We follow strict safety protocols, which include having all patients and visitors answer a coronavirus questionnaire. If you answer yes to any of the questions, we will provide you with a face mask and gloves. Additionally, we offer hand sanitizer stations at our entrance for you to use before entering our facility.

Altus Emergency Centers and all its staff is here to help our community. However, for us to be able to treat those patients who most require medical attention, we need your help.

We ask you to please stay calm, contact your doctor regarding your symptoms and only come to the ER when your symptoms are severe or if you are a high-risk patient.

By working together, we can help keep our communities safe and healthy.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

Coronavirus: How to Protect Yourself

How to Protect Yourself from Coronavirus

The coronavirus COVID-19, which started in China, is now affecting 127 countries around the world, including the United States.

The latest statistics reveal there are 3807 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the US, 68 of those are in our home state of Texas.

This a deadly virus, and we should all be proactive in trying to avoid it.

What is Coronavirus?

This family of viruses get their name from the knobs that surround them and give it the appearance of a crown.

The coronavirus causes several respiratory illnesses that range from the common cold to more severe diseases like SARS and MERS, which are life-threatening.

The Wuhan coronavirus known as COVID-19 is a previously unknown strain of the virus. Therefore, there is no vaccine available for it.

How Does it Spread?

According to the Texas Department of State Health Services, human coronavirus usually spreads from one infected person to another through:

  • Droplets released into the air by coughing and sneezing
  • Close contact, such as touching or shaking hands
  • Touching an object or surface with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose, or eyes
  • Rarely, fecal contamination

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Symptoms of Coronavirus

Those patients with confirmed 2019-nCoV develop respiratory infections which range from mild to severe, the most common symptoms include:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath

Since little is known about this strain of coronavirus, scientists don’t know how soon symptoms appear. However, the CDC believes symptoms can manifest in as little as two or as long as 14 days after exposure.

How to Protect Yourself from Coronavirus and Other Respiratory Viruses

There are no vaccines available to prevent human coronavirus infection. However, there are ways to reduce the risk of contagion; these include:

  • Washing your hands often and for at least 20 seconds with soap and water
  • Avoid touching your mouth, eyes, or nose with unwashed hands
  • Prevent close contact with people who are sick

 

Additionally, if you are ill and your symptoms are mild and don’t require hospitalization, you can help prevent the spread of the disease by:

  • Stay home while you are sick
  • Isolate yourself to avoid contact with others
  • Always cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Make sure you throw the tissue in the trash and wash your hands afterward
  • clean and disinfect objects and surfaces you touch

What to Do if You Get Infected? 

If you develop any of these symptoms, come to Altus Emergency Centers to be evaluated.

We recommend you call us ahead of time so we can prepare an exam room where you won’t be in close contact with any of our other patients.

As part of our commitment to helping keep the members of our community safe, Altus President Kevin Herrington attended the Corona Virus hearings held in Washington, Feb. 26.

Attending these congressional hearings gives us a better outlook on the spread of COVID-19 and its possible economic and medical implications.

At Altus Emergency Centers we are keeping a close eye on the spread of the COVID-19 virus, and we have taken steps to ensure our services are not affected, so our patients continue to receive the best possible care.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

Guide to Surviving Spring Break

The Essential Guide to Surviving Spring Break

You’ve been hard at work and school waiting for a chance to have some fun, and now it’s finally here Spring Break!

Before you completely unleash all that pinned up energy, stop, think, and do yourself a favor and party responsibly. It is possible to have fun and have outrageous stories to tell your kids without experiencing a medical emergency.

We are sharing this essential guide to surviving spring break, in the hopes you will have a great time while staying clear away from harm.

Time in the Sun

We understand, you are tired of looking as if you’ve lived in a dungeon for the last five 5 years, but if you really want to enjoy your time in the sun remember:

  • Wear Sunscreen, Lots of It and Reapply Often: We bet you didn’t know that sunburns are at the top of the list for ER visits during spring break, but they are.
  • Drink Plenty of Water: It’s easy to become dehydrated, especially if you are enjoying outdoor activities. Dehydration is one of the most common reasons spring breakers pay us a visit; to avoid becoming dehydrated carry a PBA friendly water bottle, choose to drink water over sugary drinks or alcohol.
  • Protect Your Eyes: Wear sunglasses when out in the sun, if you wear contact lenses remember to remove them before going into the water (swimming pool, ocean, lake), as exposing contact lenses to water can lead to painful and sometimes blinding infections.

One Tequila, Two Tequilas, Three Tequilas, Floor!

Letting loose and having a few drinks is a great way to de-stress, however, binge drinking will almost always guarantee you a trip to one of our ER centers. According to the CDC alcohol-related motor vehicle, accidents kill one person every 31 minutes and seriously injure someone every 2 minutes

  • Don’t Let Your Drink Out of Your Sight: Spiked drinks are an unfortunate reality, the use of predatory drugs has been on the rise, therefore, don’t accept drinks from strangers, never leave your drink unattended and if you are feeling woozy, confused, have trouble standing up, or are slurring your speech, ask your friends to escort you back to your room.
  • Don’t Drink and Drive: Sure, you know this, but when you are in the midst of a party you can lose track of how much alcohol you’ve had, so, if you know you will be drinking, call a cab, or a ridesharing service such as Lift, or Uber.
  • Don’t Drink in a Hot Tub: Alcohol can dilate blood vessels and sometimes lower blood pressure to dangerous levels, the effects of drinking in a hot tub or heated pool are felt faster and stronger, and you are at a higher risk of passing out and drowning.
  • Avoid Binge Drinking: Binge drinking occurs when your alcohol blood levels reach 0.08 g/dl, this typically occurs after 4 drinks for women and 5 drinks for men in a span of 2 hours. Binge drinking can lead to irreversible health damage. One way to avoid your blood alcohol concentration from reaching 0.08 g/dl is by alternating your alcohol consumption with water, once you finish your drink, have a glass of water.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Wash Your Hands!

Altus Emergency Centers is committed to safeguarding the health of the community we serve.

There are many benefits to learning the correct way to wash your hands, including:

  • It reduces the number of diarrhea cases by 23-40%
  • It lowers diarrheal illnesses in patients with a weakened immune system by 58%
  • It reduces the spread of respiratory diseases like colds by up to 21%
  • It can help reduce schoolchildren’s absenteeism due to gastrointestinal illness by as much as 57%
  • It can help protect one out of every three young children from getting sick with diarrhea, and almost one out of five young kids from contracting respiratory infections like pneumonia
  • It may help improve early child development

 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends you wash your hands during these times:

  • Before, during, and after preparing food
  • Before and after eating food
  • Before and after tending a cut or wound
  • After using the toilet
  • After changing a baby’s diaper
  • After helping a child use the bathroom
  • After sneezing, blowing your nose, or coughing
  • After touching an animal, its food or waste
  • After handling pet food or pet treats
  • After touching garbage

With the recent Corona Virus outbreak, we cannot stress how important it is to maintain your hands clean.  If you do not have access to soap and water in a particular moment, please consider carrying around a hand sanitizer.  It is also recommended to avoid touching your face while in public.

Spring Break is meant to help you unwind and have a little fun before you must go back to school and make things happen, ensuring your vacation will be a safe one is key, nothing ruins spring break as much as a trip to the ER. However, accidents do happen and just because you are being responsible doesn’t mean everyone else is, for this reason, all our Altus Emergency Centers will be open 24/7.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

Heart Disease in Texas

Heart Disease in Texas

February Is American Heart Month

This year marks the 56th consecutive year in which we celebrate American Heart Month. As part of the medical community, we are raising our raising awareness to help keep our friends and families free from heart disease.

While medical advances continue to improve our quality of life, cardiovascular disease is still the number one killer of Americans.

The American Heart Association estimates that heart disease and stroke kill close to 2300 people a day. More alarming perhaps is that younger people are falling victim to cardiovascular disease than ever before.

Heart Disease in Texas

These are the most updated statistics in Texas in 2020.  Statistics shared by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) show that heart disease was the leading cause of death in Texas in 2017, while stroke took third place.

According to the 2016 Texas Heart Disease and Stroke Fact Sheet:

  • Heart disease is more common in white adults than other ethnic groups
  • Heart disease affects more men than women
  • Deaths due to heart disease and stroke were more common in black residents than white and least common in Hispanic residents
  • More men die from heart disease than women

What Are Your Risk Factors?

We usually associate heart disease with older people; however, many of the medical conditions and lifestyle behaviors associated with an increased risk of heart disease are appearing at a younger age.

These are some of the most common risk factors for cardiovascular disease:

 

High Blood Pressure

Hypertension is becoming more frequent in people in their 40’s and 50’s, but it can affect anyone at any age.

The real danger is that many of us don’t know we have high blood pressure and are therefore not doing anything to control it.

Uncontrolled high blood pressure is one of the most significant risk factors for heart disease and stroke.

 

High Cholesterol

While it’s true, our bodies need cholesterol to build healthy cells, too much of it can increase our risk of heart disease.

Cholesterol has a waxy consistency and when we have high levels of it, we can develop fatty deposits in our blood vessels.

These deposits adhere to the walls of our arteries; over time, the buildup slows or prevents blood flow from reaching the heart muscle.

Sometimes these deposits break free and cause a cloth that can lead to a heart attack or stroke.

Smoking

Smoking is known to damage blood vessels and cause heart disease. If you are one of the 37 million Americans that are smokers, speak to your doctor to find out how you can quit.

If you are not a smoker, don’t start!

 

Chronic Disease

Certain chronic conditions are linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, including diabetes, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, and psoriasis.

The high blood sugar levels associated with diabetes can damage blood vessels and the nerves that help control the heart muscle.

The chronic inflammation associated with rheumatoid arthritis and other conditions causes damage to the blood vessels and arteries and can significantly increase the risk of a heart attack.

 

Obesity

Those extra pounds most of us carry around put additional stress on our hearts, which over time, can damage it.

Obesity has become a real health problem with more than 1 in 3 Americans and nearly 1 in 6 children under the age of 19 being obese.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

Recognize When You Are Having a Heart Attack or Stroke

When it comes to cardiovascular episodes the faster you get medical attention the better the outcome. So, it’s essential to learn how to recognize a heart attack or stroke.

 

Signs of a Heart Attack

Should you experience any of the following symptoms, call 911 immediately and ask them to bring you the nearest Altus Emergency Center or other nearby ER.

  • Pain, uncomfortable pressure, sense of fullness or tightness in the center of your chest that lasts more than a few minutes or comes and goes
  • Unusual discomfort or pain in one or both arms, stomach, neck, jaw or back
  • Unexplained shortness of breath with or without chest pain
  • Suddenly breaking out in cold sweat, lightheadedness, or nausea

The most common sign of heart attack in both men and women is chest pain or discomfort. Women are more likely to experience some of the symptoms, including especially shortness of breath, back and jaw pain, as well as nausea.

 

Signs of a Stroke

Both men and women share these stroke symptoms:

  • Face drooping
  • Arm weakness
  • Slurred speech
  • Vision problems
  • Trouble walking and other coordination problems
  • Unexplained severe headache

 

Additionally, women who are suffering from a stroke may experience the following:

  • General weakness
  • Disorientation, confusion, and memory problems
  • Fatigue

Taking control of your heart health needs to be a priority, changes in lifestyle and diet can help protect our heart from illness.

However, even if we are healthy, we can still experience a cardiovascular episode, that is why at Altus Emergency Centers, we guarantee minimal wait times, and quality emergency medical care 24/7.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

Long ER Wait Times Affect Our Quality of Life

Long ER Wait Times Affect Our Quality of Life

Quality of life is a great concern for us all, especially during the first few months of the year.  We are encouraged to evaluate the important things that make up our lives, like the state of our relationships, our finances, and our health.  As they say, “time is money”, and long ER wait times are more than just a huge waste of time.  They potentially waste life.

While most of us promise to take better care of ourselves every new year, few of us follow through. But, even if we schedule routine doctor appointments and tests, we are all vulnerable to suffer an accident or acute illness that requires emergency care.  For this reason, we will explore the impact of long wait times on the quality of life.

ER Wait Times

The truth is nobody likes to wait. We feel frustrated when our food is delayed at the restaurant. We get impatient at the stop sign when the car in front of us takes a little more time than necessary to start moving.

But, during a medical emergency, waiting can be excruciating, painful, and scary. In all honesty, no medical professional takes pleasure in making their patients wait unnecessarily. However, the reality is patients who visit overcrowded hospital ER’s need to be ready to wait.

The most recent data published by ProPublica, the average time in hours a patient spends in the ER before being sent home, is 2:05 hours.

The wait times are affected by the severity of the injury or symptoms. Patients with severe trauma or those believed to be suffering from a heart attack or stroke will always get priority.

Patients whose symptoms appear non-life-threatening will have to wait longer. The problem, of course, is that since nurses and doctors at hospital ER’s are so busy, many patients who are potentially severely injured fall through the cracks.

The number of patients who are seen by a doctor within 15 minutes of arrival to the ER is roughly 27%. However, the average patient waits 24 minutes before seeing a physician, physician assistant, or nurse practitioner.

Another concern is that the number of patients who leave the ER without getting the medical help they need has almost doubled in recent years.

All this waiting can be harmful to our quality of life. Not receiving prompt medical attention can result in more severe symptoms, more extended healing periods, permanent disability or even death.

Long ER Wait Times

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

How Altus Emergency Centers Helps Improve Your Quality of Life

Thanks to our unique business model, we can reduce the risk of our ER ever being overcrowded. Our staffing model ensures there are always enough medical professionals, including physicians, assistants, and nurse practitioners who can take care of our patients.

When you visit one of our facilities, on average, you will be seen by a registered nurse within 6 minutes.  If your injury or symptoms are non-critical, the doctor will be at your side within 15 minutes after arrival. However, doctors will see critically ill patients on arrival. We recommend you use our online check-in form while on the way to our facility so our staff can be ready to receive you at the door.

And, thanks to our onsite laboratory and diagnostic imaging, it usually takes our doctors only 79 minutes to reach a diagnosis and begin treatment.

At Altus Emergency Centers, our patients get to go home within 90 minutes after arrival compared to more than 2 hours at overcrowded hospital ER’s.

Quality of life matters to us; we know how stressful a visit to our ER can be. We work hard to provide our customers with the best emergency care, fast, and at the best rates.

While it’s true, you cannot plan for an emergency; you now know where to go!

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies. We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times. After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process. We are here to help you get well and stay well!

Risk of Long ER Wait Times

Risk of Long ER Wait Times

Nobody likes to wait but waiting when you are sick or in pain is worse, and frankly, for us, it’s unacceptable.

At Altus Emergency Centers, we know firsthand how pain and fear can affect patients and their families. That is why we always strive to find better ways to improve our response times.

These are some of our most recent improvements:

Online Check-In

You can complete the simple form while you are on your way to our nearest center.

The online check-in offers many benefits:

  • It alerts our staff you are coming so we will be waiting for you at the door
  • It helps cut our response time significantly which is vital for critical patients
  • Our administrative staff and Patient Advocate can start the insurance paperwork ahead of time so you can go home faster

In-House Doctors

We are very excited about this recent change. Altus Emergency Centers has broken with tradition and decided to do things better by hiring doctors directly.

Having in-house physicians working around the clock has not only improved how fast we can treat patients, it has also it has allowed us to improve our quality of care.

How Risky Are ER Wait Times?

The overcrowding crisis of hospital-based ER’s is an undeniable threat to public health.

There have been many studies regarding the effects of long wait times in the ER to patient outcomes.

One study found that patients who visited the ER and encountered long wait times were more likely to die or require hospitalization after they left the ER.

Additionally, research from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality linked ER overcrowding with more frequent medication errors. Meaning patients either got the wrong medication or the wrong dose. The study also found that when hospital ER’s are overcrowded, more patients did not receive their medicine when needed.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

What Causes Hospital-Based ER Overcrowding?

risk of long er wait times hospital overcrowding

Understanding what causes a problem is usually the first step in finding a solution to it. In the case of ER overcrowding, the answer is not always clear.

Many reasons can cause a hospital ER to become overcrowded:

  • A big accident brought in too many patients at once
  • The ER is understaffed

There are patients in the ER that need hospitalization, but the hospital doesn’t have room for them. When this happens, patients must stay in the ER until the hospital can take them in; this means there are fewer beds available in the ER.

How Long Will You Have to Wait in the ER?

Waiting in the ER can be distressing, not only for patients who under the best circumstances are in a lot of pain and at worst are fighting for their lives. It is also stressful for family members.

ER doctors and nurses also feel the pressure to see more patients, and this can result in lower quality of care.

According to the latest data from Pro Publica, the average wait time for a patient to see a doctor in a hospital-based ER is 18 minutes. On average, it takes 132 minutes from the time the patient first enters the ER to the time they get to go home.

By comparison, patients who visit an Altus Emergency Center can expect to be on their way home within 90 minutes. How do we achieve this?

  • It takes only 6 minutes for one of our registered nurses to evaluate a patient
  • Non-critical patients will get to see a doctor within 15 minutes after arrival. Critical patients receive immediate medical attention.

Thanks to our onsite laboratory and diagnostic imaging, on average, our doctors can have a final diagnosis within 79 minutes.

Percentage of Patients Who Leave the ER Without Being Seen by a Doctor

(Lower Percentages are Better)

Altus ER

0%

Texas Average

2%

National Average

2%

Percentage of patients who came to the emergency department with stroke symptoms who received brain scan results within 45 minutes of arrival

(Higher percentages are better)

Altus ER

100%

Texas Average

72%

National Average

73%

Average (median) time patients spent in the emergency department before they were seen by a healthcare professional

(A lower number of minutes is better)

Altus ER

0 minutes

Texas Average

25 minutes

National Average

18 minutes

Texas and National Averages were Obtained from the Medicare site.

At Altus Emergency Centers, we are proud of the high standard of care we offer our patients. We can outperform hospital-based ER because of the dedicated, passionate people that work with us and thanks to our outstanding technology and facilities.

Every one of our emergency centers is equipped to treat any medical emergency. For those patients who require hospitalization, we process the transfer or referral, and for critically injured patients, we can arrange transport via air ambulance.

When in need, choose to receive the best treatment with no wait times, select to be treated at Altus Emergency Centers!

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

How Does the Online Check-In Work?

Watch Reagan explain how to use our Quick & Easy Online Check-In System.  It comes in handy to know there’s a great solution as we know there’s no time to wait in an emergency!  Here, he is explaining how it works for Lumberton but you can find it right on our home page, Altus Emergency or just scroll below!

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies.  We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times.  After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process.  We are here to help you get well and stay well!

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

We Agree 100%.

Emergencies can happen when you least expect them. When an emergency happens to a loved one, there is only one thing in our minds, get them the help they need, fast!

The problem is that wait times at hospital ER’s are long because of staffing issues and overcrowding. This also affects the quality of service received. The more patients’ doctors must treat, the less time they have, to spend with each of them.

At Altus Emergency Centers, we have always put patients first, and our response times have consistently been faster than the state average. And today, with our new online check-in system, we can guarantee a no wait time for every patient.

By filling out our simple check-in form while in route to one of our centers, our staff will be waiting for you at the door when you arrive.

When is it an Emergency?

Not every illness or injury requires a visit to our ER, but these symptoms certainly do:

  • Chocking
  • Trouble Breathing
  • Head Injuries
  • Injury to Neck or Spine
  • Electric Shock or Lightning Strike
  • Severe Burns
  • Severe Chest Pains or Pressure in the Chest Area
  • Seizures
  • Fainting
  • Pain in the Arm, or Jaw
  • Severe Headaches
  • Suddenly not Being Able to Speak, See, Walk or Move
  • Sudden Weakness or Drooping on One Side of the Body
  • Inhaled Smoke or Poisonous Fumes
  • Sudden Confusion
  • Heavy Bleeding that Won’t Stop
  • Broken Bones
  • Deep Wounds
  • Severe Allergic Reactions with Trouble Breathing, Swelling, Hives
  • High Fever with Headache and Stiff Neck
  • Poisoning
  • Drug or Alcohol Overdose

Time Sensitive Conditions

 

Many of the symptoms listed above could indicate you are having a stroke or a heart attack. Both conditions require prompt treatment to improve the survival rate.

For instance, following a stroke, patients must receive clot-busting drugs within three hours for the best chance at avoiding long-term cerebral or physical damages.

In the case of a heart attack, patients must receive treatment to unblock clogged coronary arteries no more than 90 minutes after a heart attack.

What’s more, specialized care, including cooling therapy and cardiac catheterization, given after cardiac arrest, has been shown to improve survival.

Know Where to Go in Case of an Emergency.

How Altus Emergency Centers Compares to State and National Averages

Overcrowding and understaffing issues in hospital emergency departments have created a state and national crisis.

Because of emergency room delays, many patients develop complications and require longer recovery times. This can take a toll not only on the health of the patient but also on their family finances.

At Altus Emergency Centers, we continue to work to provide our patients with the best care, delivered immediately, and at an affordable price.  

As you can see, our efforts have paid off!

Percentage of Patients Who Leave the ER Without Being Seen by a Doctor

(Lower Percentages are Better)

Altus ER

0%

Texas Average

2%

National Average

2%

Percentage of patients who came to the emergency department with stroke symptoms who received brain scan results within 45 minutes of arrival

(Higher percentages are better)

Altus ER

100%

Texas Average

72%

National Average

73%

Average (median) time patients spent in the emergency department before they were seen by a healthcare professional

(A lower number of minutes is better)

Altus ER

0 minutes

Texas Average

25 minutes

National Average

18 minutes

Texas and National Averages were Obtained from the Medicare site.

Why waste time and risk the life of a loved one while waiting at a hospital ER, when our team of top rated physicians and nurses can be waiting for you at the door to give you or your loved ones the lifesaving treatment they need.

There’s No Time to Wait in an Emergency!

WHEN THERE’S NO TIME TO WASTE, TRY OUR ONLINE CHECK-IN

How Does the Online Check-In Work?

Watch Reagan explain how to use our Quick & Easy Online Check-In System.  It comes in handy to know there’s a great solution as we know there’s no time to wait in an emergency!  Here, he is explaining how it works for Lumberton but you can find it right on our home page, Altus Emergency or just scroll below!

Check-In Online

Altus Emergency Centers Texas

is Here for You 24/7

Altus Emergency Centers are all open 24/7/365, with no lines. Our facilities are well-equipped to diagnose and treat everything from major to minor adult and pediatric emergencies.  We are honored to be a part of our beautiful Texas communities and work hard each day to help see them grow and prosper!

24 Hour ER Services – Best in Texas

Looking for the best quality 24 hour ER services?

We offer the best freestanding 24 hour ER services in Texas. We have top of the line medical technology and highly experienced ER healthcare experts prepped and ready to come to your aid in Baytown, Lake Jackson, Lumberton, and Waxahachie.

Each ER team is highly efficient in treating chest and abdominal pains, pediatric emergencies, flu symptoms, sports injuries, bone breaks, and fractures, as well as all other major and minor injuries. All services are available 24/7, including weekends and holidays with little to no wait times.  After You Receive Quality ER Care, our Patient Advocate will help ensure Hassle-Free Billing.

Our Promise is to Always Help Find the Best Solutions in Benefit of our Patients from the time you walk-in without having to wait in line and when you are personally assisted with the billing process.  We are here to help you get well and stay well!

PROTECT YOUR RIGHTS to ER CARE!

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