[!] Alert:

3/1/2024 Petoskey Child Health Associates is closing at 4:30 pm due to the continued utility outage. The After-Hours Care line is still available by phoning the office and selecting option 8.

COVID-19 ALERTS!

*With the end of the Public Health Emergency, this page is no longer regularly being updated as of July 24, 2023.  While it still contains valuable information, for the most recent guidance we suggest that you visit cdc.gov*

Check the information below listed by topic – EVENTS, TESTING, VACCINES, MASKS, and TREATMENT.

EVENTS

Alpena Services – Walk-in COVID Vaccine/Booster Clinics every Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon.  Scheduled vaccine appointments available Monday – Friday. 

Cheboygan Campus – Scheduled vaccine appointments available Monday – Friday.

Community Health Center of Nothern MI (Harbor Springs) – Scheduled vaccine appointments available Monday – Friday.

Indian River – Scheduled vaccine appointments available Monday – Friday.

Lincoln – Scheduled vaccine appointments available Monday – Friday.

Long Rapids Plaza – Walk-in COVID Vaccine/Boosters for adults and pediatrics available Mondays (10:00 am – 4:00 pm), Wednesdays (10:00 am – 4:00 pm), Thursdays (12:00 pm – 5:00 pm) and Fridays (7:00 am – 1:00 pm).  Scheduled vaccine appointments available Monday – Friday.

Oscoda – Scheduled vaccine appointments available Monday – Friday.

Ossineke – Scheduled vaccine appointments available Monday – Friday.

Petoskey Child Health Associates – Scheduled vaccine appointments available.

Pickford – Walk-in COVID Vaccine/Boosters available on Mondays (1:00 pm – 3:00 pm), Tuesdays (8:00 am – 12:00 pm) and Thursdays (8:00 am – 12:00 pm).  Scheduled vaccine appointments are preferred and available Monday – Friday.

Planning on attending a family gathering or community event?

View the graphic below and click here to download information on reducing riskOf course, there is no way to eliminate all risk – Getting vaccinated, staying boosted, washing hands, masking up, testing and isolating/quarantining when appropriate are all tools to help us minimize the risk of getting sick and passing it to others.

 

TESTING

Do you need a free at-home COVID test? 

Alcona Health Center has free tests available during regular business hours. Please do not enter our building if you are experiencing symptoms of COVID or have had a close contact exposure.

You can also order free tests to be delivered to your home by clicking here.

Do you have a home test kit manufactured by Quidel that has a short-date or recent expiration date?  We just received info that some of these kits have gotten shelf-life extensions granted by the FDA.  Check to see if your kit is included by clicking the link here – Quidel Corporation: QuickVue At-Home OTC COVID-19 Test self-life extension (fda.gov)

More information and guidance on At-Home COVID Testing – Click Here! 

Information listed on the page link above includes when you should use your at-home test kit, next steps if you have had a close contact exposure or test positive, and treatment options.

Do you need to have a COVID test at one of our offices?  Please call the Alcona Health Center location nearest you to schedule a same day or next day appointment. 

VACCINES

Vaccine eligibility is currently open to everyone 6 months and older!

  • For more information on eligibility for children and young teens click here.

Bivalent Booster is now available and recommended! 

CDC recommends one updated (bivalent) booster dose:

For everyone aged 5 years and older if it has been at least 2 months since your last dose.
For children aged 6 months–4 years who completed the Moderna primary series and if it has been at least 2 months since their last dose.

  • For more information about who should get a booster and when you should get it, click here.

Are you ready to get vaccinated?

You can also phone us at (989) 736-8157 or call the location nearest you to sign up for your COVID-19 vaccine.

Need an after-hours option or prefer to get vaccinated somewhere else?  Click here to find other options near you – vaccines.gov

Questions About COVID Vaccines?  Check with a trusted resource…

COVID vaccines have proven to be safe and effective for reducing risk of infection, and even more effective in reducing hospitalizations and deaths.  For more information and data from the CDC on COVID vaccine effectiveness click here.  For more information regarding COVID vaccine safety, click here

If you have questions about whether or not the COVID vaccine or booster are right for you, check with your healthcare provider.

More Resources on COVID Vaccines –

If you are looking for information on the COVID vaccines work, how effective or safe they are, or even how they were developed so quickly, we suggest checking out the videos available here – COVID-19 Vaccines: What You Need to Know

AHC Trusted Voices video series also provides great information from healthcare providers in our communities.  The first six installments of the video series can be found here! Watch for more to come.

Click to view previous videos in the series…

AHC Trusted Voices – Leah Conboy, DO (Pediatrician)

AHC Trusted Voices – Jenni Attie, FNP (Pediatric Nurse Practitioner)

AHC Trusted Voices – Kathleen Dunckel, MD (Retired Family Physician)

AHC Trusted Voices – Katherine Erwin, LMSW (Behavioral Health Therapist)

AHC Trusted Voices – Anna Rumbles, PharmD (Pharmacist)

AHC Trusted Voices – Sarah Stevens, PAC (Family Medicine)

AHC and MidMichigan Health Virtual Town Hall – COVID Vaccines and Your Family  (from Dec. 8, 2021)

MASKS

If you are immunocompromised or have a chronic health condition you should reach out to your healthcare provider for specific guidance on masking for your situation. You should also be mindful and take extra precautions if someone you regularly have contact with is at high risk.

Otherwise, the best resource for knowing when to mask will be following the guidance of your state and local health departments and following the CDC recommendations based on your area’s hospital admission rate.

The CDC now has an interactive tool to help you see the current risk level by county.

Alcona Health Center is updating our masking policy effective 5/15/2023

Alcona Health Center will be changing the criteria for masking while on our campuses to current area COVID hospital admission rates and other high-risk factors.  Hospital admission rates with “color” and screening questions will be posted at all patient entrances.  See the example sign below. A separate sign showing the appropriate color/admission level will be displayed next to this one on all entrances.  Green = Low/No Mask Required.  Yellow = Medium/No Mask Required.  Orange = Mask Required.  Yes to Screening Questions = Mask Required. 

Alcona Health Center is happy to pass along masks for free to community members when available to us.  You can check with your local office to see if we currently have them in stock.

For more information on where to locate free masks and education from the CDC on masking click here.

Click here to download.  Click here to download in Spanish.

TREATMENT

Have you tested positive for COVID-19?

As your Patient Centered Medical Home, it is important for your Alcona Health Center provider to be notified of any lab or test results that you have gotten from another provider or outside testing facility. This also applies to a positive COVID test. If you have had a COVID test done at a pharmacy, other testing facility (not ordered by your AHC provider), or at-home COVID test and the result is positive, please contact us right away. Your primary care provider will note it in your chart and staff will be able to provide support for any follow up care that you may need.

Treatment is available!

Some people have been eligible for intravenous treatments for COVID-19 for some time.  Now there is an oral medication (Paxlovid) that has been approved by the FDA under Emergency Use Authorization for the treatment of COVID-19.  Treatment with this medication needs to begin within the first 5 days, so it is important that you reach out to your healthcare provider right away if you have a positive test. For more information on the FDA’s Emergency Use Authorization and on the safety of Paxlovid, visit Pfizer’s website –https://www.covid19oralrx-hcp.com/

Other COVID-19 Updates…

Patient Safety – Alcona Health Center has adapted our practices and protocols due to COVID-19.   We have implemented a front door SCREENING program for anyone who enters the facility. This screening involves brief questions regarding your medical condition. We ask that only essential people accompany the patient to the clinic and that everyone continues to wear a mask that covers their mouth and nose for the entire time of the visit.  (Children under two should not wear a mask.)  Please adhere to social distancing rules of staying 6 ft apart from others while in our buildings and on our campus.

TELEHEALTH appointments are available for both medical and behavioral health services.  In many cases, you can see your healthcare provider without leaving the comfort of your home and without coming through the clinic doors.  We also have implemented secure Wi-Fi hotspots and access to tablet devices for patients who wish to utilize telehealth appointments but who would otherwise not have access to a device or the internet.  This “tablet” option is available at most locations and will soon be expanding to others!   “Tablet” appointments are also utilized when a patient is deemed to possibly be contagious.  An evaluation with a healthcare provider can be done on the tablet, with the availability for curbside testing for flu, strep throat or COVID if needed. Please phone the location nearest you for more information or to schedule a telehealth or “tablet” appointment.

Walk In Services are temporarily discontinued, but same day appointments are available!  Some same day appointments are reserved on each provider’s schedule.  Additionally, we are now offering Acute Care Clinic hours at our Alpena Services and Ossineke locations.  Both services at these locations are intended for non-emergency, same day appointments for illness and injury.  You do not need to be an established patient of Alcona Health Center to access this service.  You must phone ahead to secure an appointment time.  Walk up traffic is not permitted.  For more info on these services please phone Alpena Services at (989) 356-4049 or our Ossineke location at (989) 471-2156.

Other Resources…

COVID-19 HOTLINE: The State of MI has established a hotline to answer questions, daily from 8am to 5pm at (888)535-6136

COVID-19 Mental Health Warm Line: The State of MI warmline will operate seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. at 888-PEER-753 (888-733-7753). It is intended to serve individuals living with persistent mental health challenges including anxiety, depression and trauma. Individuals in crisis, including those considering suicide, are urged to contact the Disaster Distress Helpline 24/7 at 800-985-5990 or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 24/7 at 800-273-8255.

State of MI COVID-19 resources webpage

CDC Corona Virus webpage