Tysons, VA

Clinics and medical facilities are beginning to offer yearly vaccines as flu season approaches.

People who received their annual flu shot in a 2018 study were 82% less likely to be admitted to the ICU for potentially life-threatening symptoms, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s website.

Most people six months and older can receive a dose of the flu shot, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) said, adding that people can either choose the shot or the nasal spray.

The CDC suggests that those eligible should receive their yearly flu vaccine before the end of October.

Tysons Reporter previously did a round-up of clinics and medical facilities locally offering the vaccine on a walk-up basis.

 Photo via Hyttalo Souza on Unsplash

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People wondering where they can go to get tested for COVID-19 in Virginia now have a new resource.

The Virginia Department of Health made a map of facilities offering testing. Tysons Reporter took a look and found the phone numbers, addresses and requirements for testing at the sites in the Tysons area.

For people on the fence about whether or not to get tested, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers information and things people should consider before seeking medical attention.

Tysons

AllCare/Synergy Immediate Care (1980 Gallows Road) is offering tests Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. and Saturdays from 1 p.m. until 1:30 p.m., the site said, adding that results will usually be available within three business days. People must first go through a phone appointment before being referred to a drive-thru test, the page added.

Inova Urgent Care Center (8357 Leesburg Pike) is open for testing seven days a week from 8 a.m. until 8 p.m. People must visit with a provider first, who will then order a test for the patient, according to the website. 

Falls Church 

Kaiser Permanente at the Falls Church Medical Center (201 N. Washington Street) is offering tests for Kaiser patients only once they meet with a doctor or nurse, the page said. Drive-thru testing is available seven days a week from 9:30-11:30 a.m. and again from 3:30-7:3o p.m.

McLean

Mclean Medical Center & Urgent Care (6858 Old Dominion Drive) accepts all insurances and is open for walk-in care from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. on weekdays, the website said. 

Mclean Pharmacy (1392 Chain Bridge Road) offers testing for Medicare patients Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. People must call ahead at 571-488-6030.

McLean Immediate Care (1340 Old Chain Bridge Road) offers testing for anyone who thinks they may have the virus. A drive-in test costs $175, the website said. Hours of operation are Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturdays from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m. and Sundays from noon until 6 p.m. 

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To check-in with local doctors to see how they are faring during the COVID-19 pandemic, Tysons Reporter reached out to Kaiser Permanente, which has locations all over the mid-Atlantic region.

Dennis Truong is the regional telemedicine director and assistant physician in chief in Northern Virginia for Kaiser Permanente, who sees patients at the Tysons Corner Kaiser medical center, according to a KP spokesperson.

Truong told Tysons Reporter in a Q&A about his experience helping patients during the COVID-19 pandemic.

How are you feeling emotionally during this time?

Each day is a crazy mix of emotions. To keep a balanced mind, I take time every morning to acknowledge each one, from worrying about loved ones and colleagues, near and far, to the stress of getting the necessary work things done in this race against time. But with these emotions also brings appreciation, for what I have and for the opportunity to serve others and transform health care during this pandemic.

Many of us health care workers have trained and prepared most of our lives to serve in a moment like this. So overall, I feel emotionally strong because I’m inspired by those around me and know that doing my part, while they do theirs, will get us through this.

Each day also bring elements of pleasant emotional surprises, from family texting jokes and spontaneous words of encouragement and appreciation, to dentist friends donating masks from their practices, to colleagues willing to pitch in to help when telehealth surges all hours of the day.

This leads to the most important emotion — a glimpse of happiness — as we’re seeing how so many people care about each other’s well-being and are willing to take personal responsibility to help “flatten the curve.”

For many of my health care colleagues around the world, hope and happiness fuels us to keep fighting the fight with a positive attitude against COVID-19.

What is the attitude of patients who come in for things other than COVID-19 concerns?

In three short weeks, we’ve dramatically transformed the care delivery system at Kaiser Permanente in the mid-Atlantic region to meet the needs of our members virtually.

More than 85% of our encounters are now virtual across urgent care, primary care, and specialty care departments. This paradigm shift was possible for three key reasons. First, at Kaiser Permanente we’ve been doing virtual care (aka telehealth) since 2013 so our providers were prepared.

Also, the Kaiser Permanente culture has always been patient-centric and extremely responsive to the needs of our members. The ability to quickly pivot and rapidly scale our telehealth offerings across all services was universal.

Last, we communicated with our members early and often, so they understood the significance of using our telehealth options before they came into a clinic to keep themselves and our communities safe.

Almost all of our patients use our telehealth options of the advice nurse, e-visits, phone visits and video visits to get personalized care and care coordination before coming in to one of our medical centers. We’ve had many patients express gratitude for being able to access care, for COVID and many other medical needs that are still arising, from the comfort of home.

Do you feel that there are enough medical supplies in the Reston, Tysons, McLean and Falls Church area to support the needs of patients and doctors? What are you running low on?

COVID is now spreading quickly through many communities including here in the D.C. area and our equipment and supply needs have increased significantly as a result. Yet, we have leveraged our national network and with the support of our supply teams and our staff, have increased our supply of personal protective equipment. Through diligent conservation efforts and ongoing procurement efforts, we have the appropriate PPE to protect our team today and in the days ahead.

What trends or changes to the medical system have surprised you the most during this pandemic?

Since early March at Kaiser Permanente, we have seen a total delivery system transformation to “virtual first.” This means that our first approach to an appointment is a virtual appointment through video, phone or secure email. We have evolved to providing more than 85% of all encounters virtually. Our priority has been keeping our members safe and educating and notifying them about care choices. It is amazing how many patients and providers are now using our system “virtual first.”

How prepared is the NoVA area compared to the rest of the country for the peak of the pandemic? When do you think the peak will happen?

The latest information indicates that we could see a surge of patients in our region over the next two to three weeks. However, these models are changing and this timing may change too. We are working diligently to make sure that we are ready to care for all our patients whether they come this week, next week or later. We are also set up to continue expanding our virtual care and pharmacy delivery options as the surge occurs.

How will the pandemic affect people who come into the ER with other (non-COVID-19) life-threatening emergencies?

We are using our robust telehealth services to have our physicians safely evaluate and follow members at their homes. If patients show up to our centers, we have created separate areas to triage COVID and non-COVID patients.

For COVID patients, we triage them to a special triage location with skilled emergency medicine physicians dedicated to that work. Therefore, other patients coming to us for urgent care are treated in separate area by a separate group of emergency physicians to assure continued delivery of highest quality care.

How do you feel that this pandemic will affect the rest of your career in healthcare?

The pandemic has already affected my career in extraordinary ways. As a board-certified emergency physician, I trained in Detroit hospital systems that only knew about dealing with emergencies or those that couldn’t afford preventative care. As an active-duty Air Force physician, I learned the importance of structure but lacked the right technology.

When I came to Kaiser Permanente, I learned the importance of proactive and integrated care alongside a provider and patient-friendly electronic medical records. As the director of Virtual Care for Kaiser Permanente, I am part of a team that has spent years preparing our technology and organizational culture to understand the important role virtual care has in safely extending our care delivery reach.

Every pandemic is an opportunity to learn, and when the dust settles on COVID-19, I believe the U.S. health care system and our citizens will have fully embraced telehealth as the leading approach in healthcare.

Staff photo by Jay Westcott

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StarNut Gourmet in McLean will be offering free coffee, breakfast and lunch this weekend to local first responders, healthcare workers and essential employees.

With the help of Tential IT, the eatery at 1445 Laughlin Ave has extended this offer to be from 7:30 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Saturday and from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Sunday, a press release said.

Though the dining room is closed, according to the press release, the coffee shop and eatery is offering curbside pickup, take out and delivery through UberEats.

People wishing to order off of the menu can call 703-749-9090. Items available include sandwiches, lattes, pastries, crepes and similar fare, according to StarNut’s website.

“StarNut Gourmet is a family-owned business established in 2002 as a Specialty Food Gift Store and an International Café,” the press release said. “Owners Hozaifa Almaleh and Samira Ardalan very much look forward to welcoming everyone back once it’s safe.”

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In response to everything happening with the COVID-19 pandemic, several local groups decided to raise money to feed medical workers at local facilities.

Though Hearts of Empowerment, the P.U.S.O. Foundation and Mighty Meals all typically serve different purposes in the community, they began a joint GoFundMe campaign to feed health care workers throughout the Tysons area, according to a press release.

Since the campaign’s kick-off on March 24, the organizers have raised $4,250 and counting. So far, more than 85 people have donated to the cause.

Hearts of Empowerment is a non-profit organization that wants to ensure that no charity is forced to close its doors due to a lack of funding, its website said, adding that it will donate $750 of the company’s own funds in addition to what is raised on the GoFundMe page.

The P.U.S.O. Foundation, which stands for Purposeful Unconditional Service to Others, works to empower people in underserved areas of the world, according to its website. The foundation will donate an extra $1,000, on top of what is crowdsourced, according to the GoFundMe campaign.

Mighty Meals — the group that will cater the food — was founded on a platform that everyone should have access to healthy and fulfilling meals, its website said. Mighty Meals will match the total donation amount by 25%, according to the GoFundMe.

“To date, we have delivered over 200 meals and our efforts will continue on a weekly basis as we have made it our goal to feed the staff of a new hospital every week,” a spokesperson for Hearts of Empowerment said.

On top of the funding for meals, Trophy Body Personal Training will be sponsoring free social distancing outdoor workouts for doctors and nurses, according to the GoFundMe.

Photos courtesy Hearts of Empowerment

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The Lewinsville Center, an “intergenerational facility” with programs for the elderly and children, is now open in McLean.

The new center houses:

  • The Lewinsville Senior Center: a program with a fitness room, tech access, and gathering places for adults 50 and over to take up new hobbies and socialize.
  • Lewinsville Adult Day Health Care: a program designed for memory care, including a gated outdoor garden and fountain, an indoor walking path, library, health clinic and art room.
  • Lewinsville Montessori School and Westgate Child Care Center: colorful play and learn spaces aimed at caring for young children.

The new center is built near The Fallstead, an 82-unit affordable senior living facility, which opened last October.

“The Lewinsville Center seeks to foster a strong sense of community through providing the supports, programs and services which allow individuals and families throughout the neighborhood to continue to contribute their talents and abilities through all of life’s stages,” according to Fairfax County’s Neighborhood and Community Services website.

Both the Lewinsville Center and The Fallstead aim to address a lack of senior living and senior care facilities throughout Fairfax County.

Images via Fairfax County

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Monday Morning Notes

Downed Trees Block Roads — A High Wind Warning is in effect for Fairfax County for most of the day. A number of trees are reported to have fallen in parts of the area, blocking roads, including in McLean on Old Dominion Drive at Franklin Park Road and on Georgetown Pike near the Beltway. [Twitter, Twitter]

Police Department Mourns Fallen K-9 — “Fairfax County Police Chief Edwin C. Roessler, Jr. announced the unexpected death today, Feb. 22, of K-9 Doby, one of our K-9 officers.” [FCPD]

FCPS Gets More Than Half of Budget — “For the second year in a row, Fairfax County plans to grant all of the transfer funds requested by the county school board… FCPS accounts for 52.9 percent of the county’s general fund budget. Hill’s proposed county transfer to the public school system exceeds the $2.1 billion requested by the school board.” [Fairfax Times]

The Case for Suburb-to-Suburb Transit — “The Purple Line, which is expected to begin service in late 2022, will provide an important suburb-to-suburb link, and local officials should seriously consider constructing extensions to Tysons Corner and Largo.” [Greater Greater Washington]

More Childless Households in Falls Church — “While the 2.4 million population in the Northern Virginia region, overall, is characterized by a continuing growth in numbers of children, and households with children, this is not true for Falls Church… the number of households with children in the City has actually decreased by 5.3 percent in that same period.” [Falls Church News-Press]

Local Doc Goes on Medical Mission Trip — “On Jan. 26, 2019, a team from… Virginia Oral, Facial & Implant Surgery of McLean flew from Dulles Airport to Punta Cana, Dominican Republic” on a medical mission trip to treat “both children and adults of Dominican and Haitian background.” [McLean Connection]

New Look for Tysons Reporter — Tysons Reporter is debuting a new, cleaner look for our site today. What do you think? Let us know in the comments.

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A couple called Vienna police New Year’s Day after a dispute at a local urgent care center.

The incident happened shortly after 1 p.m. at the Inova Urgent Care center at 180 Maple Avenue W. Police were called after a man was refused entry to his wife’s exam room by urgent care staff, citing company policy.

“The man and his wife left the facility and called the police,” the Vienna Police Department said in its weekly crime report. “Officers summoned EMS personnel who evaluated the wife but found she was not in need of any further treatment.”

Reached for comment, an Inova spokeswoman told Tysons Reporter that family members are allowed in exam rooms “at the discretion of the patient.”

“In compliance with HIPAA laws, Inova cannot comment on specific patient matters,” said Iova’s Tracy Connell. “At the discretion of the patient, family members may accompany patients in examination rooms at our Urgent Care Centers.”

Photo via Google Maps

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