COVID-19 (Coronavirus) UPDATE

Patient Visit Instructions & Safety Rules Beginning 5/11/2020

Dear San Antonio Eye Center Patients, Family, and Team,

As we plan for re-opening, we want you to know that we agree with Governor Greg Abbot, who said, “We want to re-open protecting lives while restoring livelihoods.”

Regarding our temporary closure, we hope that everyone recognizes our primary concern is for the safety of our patients, employees, providers, and their families.

Please read below for our initial plan for re-opening. While we know the situation is fluid and subject to change, we will do our best to stay on top of things and do what is best for everyone.

Here are a few guidelines for our planned re-opening on May 11, 2020.

Treating patients

There are simple steps a clinic can take to help prevent the spread of viral infections, including having a plan to ensure that a person ill with any respiratory illness follows good cough etiquette and hand hygiene.

Our plan will include the following:

  • All employees and physicians will have their temperature checked prior to the start of work.
  • As patients call in, they will be instructed that if they have any have fever, cough, or any symptoms of not feeling well to please reschedule.
  • All patients will have to wear a mask. City ordinance now requires anyone over the age of 10 to wear their own mask in public places were social distancing is difficult which includes grocery stores, big box stores, or where close contact is unavoidable. If a patient refuses to wear a mask or we cannot provide one they will have to be rescheduled.
  • We will maintain social distancing within the waiting rooms. In order to do so all doors will remain locked. All family members will be asked to remain in their vehicle.
  • Patients can check in at the front door. Here we will confirm their appointment and take their temperature. If a patient has an abnormal temperature and the rendering physician determines that the patient needs to be seen, we will go into potential risk mode which is defined below.
  • We will verify we have adequate space to allow the patient to enter the office. If we do not, we will take down their cell phone number and we will call the patient when it is their turn to come into the clinic.
  • Patients will be worked up by technicians and placed in a room. The physicians will rotate from room to room to see the patients.
  • Every room will be wiped down and/or will be UV sterilized after every patient.
  • A staff member will be assigned to wipe down or UV sterilize every chair after a patient is called back to be seen.
  • Bathrooms will be cleaned every 45 minutes.
  • Employees will be provided with N95 masks for as long as possible, however each employee should also plan on obtaining their own cloth mask or alternative should we not be able to provide them. This is to protect our patients who may be at higher risk.
  • Due to the shortage of masks employees will be provided with a couple of masks. These masks will be rotated and need to be sterilized. Sterilization instructions will be provided to all employees.
  • Your mask always needs to be worn while in the clinic.
  • When employees go to lunch, we ask that you go to your vehicle or outdoors while social distancing to eat your lunch.
  • When you go home please change your clothes in the garage or the front door and immediately take it to be washed. If possible then sanitize your hands and arms or take a shower to help remove any possible viral residue.
  • Physicians who travel will change scrubs when clinic is done prior to arrival at their next location.

Potential Risk COVID Patients

  • If a person with possible COVID-19 arrives unexpectedly, ask the rendering physician to determine if the patient needs to be seen or if the patient should be rescheduled. If the patient needs to be seen, we will provide the patient a surgical mask and take them immediately to an exam room. Keep the exam room door closed.
  • If possible, suspected COVID-19 patients should be escorted into the building through an entrance that allows them to access an exam room without exposing others.
  • Minimize the number of healthcare workers interacting with the patient.
  • Collect all specimens and perform clinical interventions in the exam room if possible.
  • The exam room should be left empty for as long as possible after the patient has left; the room should be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.
  • If a COVID-positive patient shows up or calls for an appointment the physician needs to make a determination if the patient can wait 14 days to be seen or if they need to go to the university.

Supporting employees

Our Clinics play a vital role in keeping our community and families healthy. To do that, they need to take care of their staff and providers.

Those steps should include:

  • Anyone who becomes sick or who has family members at home who are sick with a fever and/or cough at work to go home immediately, and return only after they are free of symptoms for at least 72 hours (without the use of fever-reducing medicines or cough suppressants).
  • If you feel sick or that you have contracted the virus you can request testing by following San Antonio government recommendations for testing and protocols.

Telemedicine Appointments for Walk-In Eye Clinic Patients

During the COVID-19 pandemic, your health and safety is our top priority. SAEYE is reducing the number of patients who have to physically walk in to discuss their eye care. 

Currently, SAEYE is offering Telemedicine appointments to our Eye Clinic patients with URGENT problems. These virtual visits allow our doctors to call you the same day at a scheduled time to discuss your condition, tell you whether you need to come in, and prescribe medication, if needed.

By Phone:
Call 210-226-6169, 8am-5pm, to make a same/next day telemedicine appointment. A doctor will call you at the scheduled time.

For your telemedicine appointment, please download either of the vision apps below and have it open at the time of your appointment. This will help the doctor treating you.

  • iPhone: eyeCuity
  • Android/Samsung: Visual Acuity Test

By Video:
To schedule a video consultation please call 210-226-6169, 8am-5pm, to make a same day/next day appointment.

If possible, please download either of the vision apps below and have it open when you call. This will help the doctor treating you.

  • iPhone: eyeCuity  
  • Android/Samsung: Visual Acuity Test
  • Facetime

To prepare for your telemedicine appointment, please be ready with:

  • List of medicines you take, eye drops you use, and eye or medical problems you have.

General Eye Clinic Information

San Antonio Eye Center is the place to start when you need to see a doctor for eye injuries and infections.

To ensure a timely visit, it is best to schedule an appointment in advance by calling 210-226-6169 between 8:30 am – 4:30 pm, Monday through Friday.

Eye Clinic Hours of Operation

For our patients’ convenience, our clinic is open during the following hours:

Hours for patients with appointments: Monday through Friday, 8:00 am – 5:30 pm Either done via telemedicine or via in clinic visit, please talk to our schedulers for more detail.

Our Services

The dedicated and highly trained physicians and support staff at the San Antonio Eye Center are experts in the treatment of a wide range of eye disorders, from infections, dry eyes, and tear duct obstruction, to all other general ophthalmic issues. Our subspecialty services include:

  • Comprehensive Eye Services
  • Cornea and Dry Eye
  • Glaucoma
  • Pediatric ophthalmology
  • Retina
  • Low Vision
  • Minor Surgery
  • Oculoplastic and Orbital Surgery
  • Refraction/Eyeglasses

Preparing for Your Visit

Please review the following simple guidelines in order to help your visit run smoothly:

  • Arrival: Patients with scheduled appointments should arrive no more than 5 minutes before the appointment time to register for your visit.
  • What to bring: All patients must bring their Medicare, Medicaid, and/or insurance cards, and identification for each visit. For telemedicine this will be confirmed prior to the visit.
  • Identification: All patients must show identification at time of visit, preferably picture ID, with proof of address.
  • Referrals: For all appointments and walk-in patients, if you belong to a managed care plan, a referral from your primary care doctor is necessary. It is your responsibility to obtain the referral from your doctor prior to your visit with us and to bring it with you when you come for your appointment. Please have the referral made out to San Antonio Eye Center. If you do not have a referral you may be responsible for fees associated with the visit.
  • Follow-up Appointment:After your visit with us, if the doctor asks you to return for a follow-up visit, please schedule the appointment for your next visit at the receptionist discharge desk before you leave.

Eye Clinic Fees

Please review the following helpful guidelines regarding fees and payments:

  • Each clinic visit for self-pay patients is $150.00.
  • Every time you come for an appointment, you must first register and pay any required co-pay. You will receive a receipt for all registrations.
  • Payments can be made with MasterCard, Visa, American Express, Discover, certified checks, and cash for in person visits. Persons having telemedicine visits will speak to a representative to make payment prior to consultation from their physician.
  • Please have the referral made out to San Antonio Eye CenterIf you do not have a referral you may be responsible for fees associated with the visit.

We want to thank our patients for their understanding, our providers and our team for stepping up in this time of crisis. We not only have shown we have the

SAEYE-TITUDE but that we are #SAEYESTRONG! 

We miss our patients, staff, and each other and we look forward to seeing you all back in our office soon. Please keep social distancing and remain safe. Together we will show this virus that the SAEYE COMMUNITY is STRONGER!

Respectfully,

Albert Castillo, CEO

San Antonio Eye Center

A special message for patients from Dr. Randy Mauffray and the San Antonio Eye Center team. (4/14)

4/1/2020

After careful consideration, we’ve decided for the safety of our patients and staff to extend our closure until May 4th.

However, our eye care team is still able to help during this difficult time. Our on-call doctors are available when you call our office for emergency eye issues. If you have an appointment during this closure period, you can request to reschedule via our website, ZocDoc, or by calling after our reopening.

3/17/2020

Here at San Antonio Eye Center our top concern is the safety of our patients, staff and physicians.  With the recent developments surrounding COVID-19 we have implemented additional procedures to ensure our offices are clean and you are safe.  We will continue to monitor and make necessary adjustments as this is a very fluid situation.

In an abundance of caution, we have implemented these additional measures for your protection.

  1. Front desk area, waiting room and check out area will be wiped down with disinfectant multiple times throughout the day including clip boards, tablets, chairs, door handles, etc. in addition to the deep cleaning we do every evening.
  2. Exam rooms will be wiped down with disinfectant after each patient exam in additional to the deep cleaning we do every evening.
  3. Bathrooms will be wiped down with disinfectant two times in the morning and two times in the afternoon in addition to the deep cleaning we do every evening.
  4. Our offices have hand sanitizer readily available in the waiting room, check in desk, exam room (upon request), and check out area. We also highly recommend good hand washing while in our offices and to refrain from touching your face, shaking hands or touching surfaces unnecessarily.
  5. Based on CDC recommendations we will follow their policy of “social distancing”. All patients will be separated by 6 feet or more during their office visit.  This will result in limited seating capacity and patients may be asked to wait in their car until they can be brought into the office safely.  No family members will be allowed into the office unless it is absolutely necessary for them to attend to a handicapped patient.
  6. We will to screen patients for travel history and if they have had any symptoms or contact with anyone who is ill.
  7. Surgery in our ASC will continue following the same policies, the recommendation to cancel elective surgery by the CDC is to make sure hospital beds remain free for any infected patients. Our ASC does not impact the Health Systems ability to care for infected patients and in this situation can help the health system by moving cases into our surgery centers who only deal with outpatient patients.

We are asking patients to be mindful prior to coming in for their visit.  If you have a fever, cough or shortness of breath please cancel your appointment and call your primary care physician ASAP.   Also,  if you have a known exposure to a person with coronavirus or have traveled internationally or more than 100 miles outside of San Antonio please reschedule your appointment for at least two weeks later (you should also talk with your PCP to see if self-isolation is necessary).                                                     

The health of all our patients and staff is our top priority!  Thank you so much for your cooperation. 

Sincerely,

The Physicians and Staff at San Antonio Eye Center

Albert Castillo CEO