Health

Can I still go to A&E for treatment? Dr Hilary answers your questions


WE all want to keep ourselves and our loved ones safe during the coronavirus crisis.

That is why The Sun has teamed up with TV’s Dr Hilary Jones – health editor for ITV’s Good Morning Britain and Lorraine – who has been offering his expert advice to Sun readers. And you have responded in your droves. Nearly 10,000 of you have been in touch so far with questions and he has helped you cut through the confusion.

⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates

 One Sun reader asks if they should go to A&E to seek treatment
One Sun reader asks if they should go to A&E to seek treatmentCredit: Alamy
 Dr Hilary Jones is here to help Sun readers and answer your coronavirus questions
Dr Hilary Jones is here to help Sun readers and answer your coronavirus questionsCredit: Rex Features

Today Emma Pietras brings you his answers on what is classed as an emergency and when you should seek medical help.

Q. I am in isolation with my partner, 71, who has COPD. I have breast cancer.

If I attend a hospital appointment, will I be safe to return home due to coronavirus?

A. The journey to the hospital to keep your appointment is essential.

Every possible precaution will be taken there to keep you safe.

You don’t need to physically distance yourself from your partner as you live together.

Q. Can I go to A&E for treatment?

A. A&E departments are carrying on as normal.

We all need to be sensible about what constitutes emergency treatment.

It is in everyone’s interest to keep attendances as low as possible to stop potential transmission of the virus.

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Q. As a smoker, if I get coronavirus, am I more likely to get seriously ill?

A. There is some evidence that smokers are more prone to severe consequences of the virus than others.

You probably don’t feel like quitting right now, but on the other hand it has never been a better time.

Q. I had a chest infection and a sore throat a month ago.

I had antibiotics but I still have a sore throat and am coughing a bit.

I don’t want to bother my GP. What can I do?

A. You have to ride this out.

There is a slight chance you may have had coronavirus a month ago but since we cannot test at the current time you cannot know.

Lots of different viruses and bugs can cause such continuing symptoms and the good news is you no longer need to self-isolate.

Although you do need to stay at home as much as possible and practice physical distancing.

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Q. How can you tell the difference between coronavirus and a regular virus?

A. One of the problems is that you can’t.

In the early stages it can mimic other respiratory infections.

Until we have more widespread testing we don’t know how prevalent the virus is, which is one of the issues which makes treating this virus such a challenge.

Q. Is it correct that a substance has been found that blocks the entry of coronavirus to cells?

A. Sadly, no.

We are striving to develop an effective vaccine as fast as possible.

Q. Will warmer weather kill off coronavirus?

A. While humidity and temperature is known to affect the normal seasonal flu viruses, corona-virus behaves differently.

Its consequences can be seen around the world in both warm and colder countries.

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Q. My 24-year-old daughter feels a bit breathless and says her chest is tight, but there is no cough or fever. Should we worry?

A. Is she anxious?

Has she had these symptoms before?

Anxiety can often affect breathing.

If she really is finding it hard to breathe, is breathing rapidly and cannot hold her breath for more than a few seconds or so, she should call or go to NHS 111 online for further guidance.

Q. My partner has a duodenal ulcer, a hiatus hernia and Barrett’s oesophagus. Is he vulnerable?

A. These conditions are not thought to make people more vulnerable to coronavirus and he is not classed in the “vulnerable” group.

They might make him cough but it is only a new dry, persistent cough that might suggest that he could’ve picked up the virus.

So that is what he ought to look out for.

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