Special Bulletins-London East Medical Centre
Face Mask Exemption Policy from the Doctors at the London East Medical CentreIn light of the new regional bylaw requiring the mandatory wearing of face masks in work places and areas where physical distancing is not possible, we have been receiving many requests from patients to provide medical exemptions from needing to wear face masks. The physicians at London East Medical Centre will not be issuing any medical exemptions for face masks. The conclusion of currently available medical evidence is that there very few medical conditions which exempt someone from wearing a face mask. In fact, for patients with chronic respiratory conditions, such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, seasonal allergies, and chronic sinusitis, the evidence strongly supports the use of face masks to reduce your risk of catching Covid 19 and the severe complications associated with it. For individuals who feel they do not tolerate face masks due to mental health reasons such as anxiety, we recommend avoiding situations likely to trigger anxiety while wearing face masks.
This policy regarding face mask usage is supported by both Canadian and American Lung Associations. You can find these policies regarding the use of face masks here:
If you have further questions regarding the above policy, feel free to schedule a follow up appointment with your doctor.
Return to SchoolSelf-reporting forms for return to school / work - can be used instead of a doctor's note which should not be requiredWhile an individual suspected to have COVID-19 is waiting for test results they must be in isolation and cannot attend school in person. The individual can attend school virtually if they feel well enough to participate.
Individuals who have had a COVID-19 test because of symptoms, but who test negative should not return to school until at least 24 hours after their symptoms have resolved.
Individuals who have traveled out of the country should isolate for 14 days.
Where a student or staff member has tested positive for COVID-19, the local PHU will be in contact with the school to provide further direction on returning to school.
Barriers to return to school, such as requirement of medical notes or proof of negative tests, should be avoided.
If an ill individual does not have COVID-19:
For an ill individual who has a known alternative diagnosis provided by a health care provider, return to school can occur when symptoms are resolved for at least 24 hours.
If you have a concern about COVID-19, please follow the steps below.
Use the Ontario Ministry of Health’s online self-assessment tool at https://www.ontario.ca/page/2019-novel-coronavirus-covid-19-self-assessment
Call Telehealth at 1-866-797-0000 for a telephone assessment if you have symptoms that include fever and/or cough AND any of the following within 14 days prior to the onset of illness:
a. Travel outside of Canada
b. Close contact with a confirmed or probable case
c. Close contact with a person with Acute Respiratory Illness, who has been to an affected area
If you are not able to assess your symptoms, consider visiting the COVID-19 Assessment Centre for further information.
Anyone with severe respiratory illness, or a medical emergency should go to hospital.Signs of severe respiratory illness include:
• Shortness of breath/unable to catch your breath
• Severe fever that does not come down with Tylenol/acetaminophen
• Energy so low that you are physically unable to get out of bed or barely able and must rest again immediately