Your Patients Have Questions About Coronavirus — Is Your Website Answering Them?
Coronavirus has made its way to the US, and with the growing pandemic has come growing fear and confusion.
Your patients, employees, and members of the community are full of questions and concerns — and as a hospital, you have a responsibility to educate and be a trusted health resource in your community.
If you are not able to update your website daily, it’s helpful to direct users to sources that have the latest facts and figures, like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
But for information about the virus — from prevention and preparation to treatment to myth-busting — your website is the perfect place for people to get answers.
Here are some questions about coronavirus that your hospital website should address.
General Information About Coronavirus
- What is coronavirus? What is the difference between coronavirus, COVID-19, and novel coronavirus?
- How does the coronavirus differ from influenza?
- Who is most at risk?
- How does coronavirus affect children?
- What are some common myths about coronavirus — and what is the truth?
Coronavirus And Your Hospital
- How many confirmed cases are in your service area?
- How does this compare to the flu burden in your service area?
- How is the hospital ensuring the safety of patients and employees?
- How is the hospital protecting pregnant women?
- When should I stay home from work? When should I keep my kids home?
- What are the best ways to stay safe?
- Do masks and hand sanitizers really work?
- What special precautions should people with compromised immune systems take?
- What special precautions should pregnant women take?
- How can I protect myself when using public transportation?
- Do antibacterial products protect me from the virus?
- If I can’t find antibacterial products, how can I make my own at home? What’s the recipe?
- What does quarantine mean?
- Who needs to be quarantined?
- How do I best prepare for quarantine? Should I be stocking up on items like toilet paper?
- How can I self-quarantine if I have a family? How can I protect the rest of my family at home if I’m under a 14-day quarantine?
Diagnosis And Treatment
- How is coronavirus diagnosed?
- Where can I go to get tested? Can I get tested for COVID-19 at an urgent care facility?
- What should I do if I suspect I have coronavirus?
- Can coronavirus be treated?
- What kind of thermometer should I use to check my temperature at home?
- Should I keep my domestic travel plans?
- Should I keep my international travel plans?
- If I decide to travel, how can I keep myself safe on the plane?
Additional Questions And Concerns
- If I’m sick with something else, is it safe to still go to the doctor or hospital?
- Will the virus still be contagious during the summer months?
- If the virus goes dormant in the summer, will it come back with a vengeance in the fall/winter?
- What do I do if I don’t have a primary physician?
- What if I don’t have health insurance?
Help! How Do I Get These Answers Right Away?
Any time you publish medical content, it’s best to have a provider or medical writer check for accuracy — and it’s even better if you can interview them before writing to get the answers directly. However, during a changing-by-the-hour crisis like coronavirus, there is a bit of a time crunch.
If there isn’t enough time for a formal interview, ask a provider to send you an audio recording that you can transcribe, or even a short video that you can post on your site and social media accounts. You can also ask them for links to resources they trust and would prefer you to pull information from when writing.