We will be updating this frequently as we learn more!

Continue to stay safe, stay healthy,  wash your hands, and continue to practice physical distancing. #stayhometexas

Connection without Infection: Free weekly Zoom Group

Social/ physical distancing should not equal social isolation! Let’s stay connected! Beginning next week we will be meeting via zoom for a (free) group meditation & Connection every Tuesday @ 1pm 3/31-4/21. Connect with us

Our Trusted Resources, Information for boosting immunity & Managing Anxiety during COVID19:

05.05.2020

We will be continuing Solidarity Visits/ only pay what you can through May 2020 as well as our Connection without Infection- free weekly zoom meeting

04.20.2020

For information on supporting our children during this time & COVID 19 testing check out our other blogs:
How to Support our Children During a Pandemic
COVID19 Testing: What you Should Know

04.09.2020

COVID Solidarity Visits: Pay what you can

Don’t let financial stress be a barrier to reaching out for medical help at this time- WE ARE HERE FOR YOU!

For the rest of April, We will see patients over telemedicine (new and existing) and they will only need to pay what they can.

The fruit of silence is prayer.
The fruit of prayer is faith.
The fruit of faith is love.
The fruit of love is service.
The fruit of service is peace.
-Saint Mother Teresa of Calcutta

Sometimes we need a push and sometimes we need a shove.

I’ve long been bothered by how to offer my services as an integrative physician and reconcile all the expenses and efforts of my training and gifts and maintain a healthy business so that I can continue to serve people… while still serving from the heart and helping those most in need. Over the years I have flirted with finding a practice model that just lets people pay me what they can or what they think it is worth. But I have never had the courage to do so. I do think it is important to have some sort of exchange and boundaries and our culture does seem to value things that cost more, and when someone invests in their health it has therapeutic benefit, but I do think a shift is needed to provide integrative and functional medicine to folks, especially during this time of such uncertainty and suffering.

Integrative and functional medicine looks at why and how illness occurs and restores health by addressing the root causes of disease for each individual and addresses our heath: MIND, BODY and SPIRIT. During COVID19, there could not be a more important time. Theresa Hernandez and I use our training to support patients in becoming more resilient. We help provide folks with “internal PPE” you might say! We can also provide folks with more conventional medical advice and incorporate all our tools into our support for you.

So, when I heard this report on NPR while driving into my office today, I got my “shove.” In Naples Italy they are using solidarity baskets to lower food down to the street for people to pay what they can (or not). I have decided to apply the same concept to my medical practice until the end of April 2020 and perhaps longer. For the rest of April, We will see patients over telemedicine (new and existing) and they will only need to pay what they can. Theresa Hernandez can also see patients but her access may be more limited as she is homeschooling her 2 children and expecting another child at the end of the month! Again, this is such a time of uncertainty for us all, but we can each do our part and support and help one another.

We will also continue our weekly free zoom group: Connection without Infection at 1 pm on Tuesdays!

Peace and strength to you all!

Dr Julie 

03.25.2020

We hope you are staying safe & staying healthy! In this time of constant change and uncertainty, we wanted to remind you of your RESILIENCE! To calm your anxieties, co-create a plan for COVID preparation &/or treatment- or for any other health needs- We are here for you and your family via telemedicine!\

For the time being during this crisis, we are available for telemedicine consultations for your immediate family and loved ones ANYWHERE IN THE STATE OF TEXAS for abbreviated medical visits and not requiring the initial long first intake appointment to get established with our office. Please contact the office for more information.

03.19.2020

The pandemic journey continues and you are in our thoughts and prayers as we navigate this challenging time. As we move through these unprecedented times, we are doing our best to be a resource for you. We have been fielding phone calls, messages and refills this week and will be back in the office on Monday March 23.

We are here to support you, your family members, dear ones and the community.

We are moving to 100% telemedicine visits (video and phone) and not seeing patients in the office unless it is specifically arranged after we meet over telemedicine when a physical exam is required.

For the time being during this crisis, we are available for telemedicine consultations for your immediate family and loved ones ANYWHERE IN THE STATE OF TEXAS for abbreviated medical visits and not requiring the initial long first intake appointment to get established with our office.

We are keeping informed as we LEARN about testing and management guidelines as they evolve. We want to help you make the best decisions for the health of yourself as an individual and for that of your family and community. From what we’re hearing, people are doing their best to protect themselves AND the community-at-large including those who are most vulnerable. Thank you!

As health care workers, we are working for the greater good and the judicious use of resources. Communication is key.  In case of illness or questions about steps to take, please use our patient portal or call to set up a phone or telemedicine video visit.

We want to encourage you to remember to use the stress management techniques that have gotten you through other challenges and the LIVE IT approach we share – these include:

  • calming breathwork, meditation, hydration and adequate restorative sleep.
  • consider other immune supports such as zinc lozenges, vitamin C, vitamin A, garlic.
  • while it’s important to stay informed, consider limiting or scheduling exposure to news and social media.
  • be open to moments of opportunity to rest and reset.

Infected persons can be asymptomatic, for this reason it is important for EVERYONE to practice physical distancing for their own safety and the safety of others.

What should I do if I feel sick? 

If you feel sick, please contact us through secure messaging or by phone to request an appointment with us. We will do our best to get you on the schedule.

Hope for the best, prepare for the worst: On an index card write your name, list of major medical conditions,  medications, allergies, contact information of emergency contact, and medical power of attorney if you have it. This will help the physicians in case you get admitted.

There was anecdotal evidence out there regarding use of NSAIDS /ibuprofen. We can’t find definitive evidence but remember that a fever is your body’s defense and it’s killing the virus and if you can ride it out and it’s less than 103 degrees, you may not need to treat it.

We will be sending out a communication with more Integrative Considerations during this pandemic from the Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine but given what we know now and about the cytokine “storm” that can occur with COVID-19, if you have symptoms we advise AGAINST these agents which we encourage during other times to boost your immune system:

  • Vitamin D
  • Sambucus nigra (Elderberry)
  • Polysaccharide extracts from medicinal mushrooms
  • Echinacea angustifolia and E. purpurea
  • Larch arabinogalactan

We encourage you to use trusted sources for information such as:

 Useful guidance for people in the community from Austin Public Health as of March 17, 2020: 

    • Any individual who is aware of close unprotected contact (within 6 feet) of an individual with COVID-19 should stay home and monitor their temperature and symptoms for 14 days.
    • Individuals aware they have been in the same room, but not within six feet, of an individual with COVID-19 should self-monitor their temperature and symptoms for 14 days, avoid close gatherings where they cannot maintain 6 feet of separation from others, including mass transit and air travel.
    • Individuals exposed to a case who become symptomatic, including with a cough and/or fever, should stay home and contact their primary care provider or telemedicine provider for advice and assessment of testing priority with Austin Public Health.
  • Anyone who is feeling ill – even if they are not aware of any contact with a COVID-19 case – should also stay at home.
  • Austin Public Health is working in collaboration with the Dell Medical School and local healthcare systems to rapidly increase the availability of testing, including locations for drive-through testing.

What is meant by Isolation and Quarantine? Isolation and quarantine help protect the public by preventing exposure to people who have or may have a contagious disease. Isolation separates sick people with a contagious disease from people who are not sick.

For home isolation:

  • Stay away from others: As much as possible, you should stay in a specific “sick room” and away from other people in your home. Use a separate bathroom, if available.
  • Limit contact with pets & animals: You should restrict contact with pets and other animals, just like you would around other people.
    • Although there have not been reports of pets or other animals becoming sick with COVID-19, it is still recommended that people with the virus limit contact with animals until more information is known.

Patients with confirmed COVID-19 should remain under home isolation precautions until the risk of secondary transmission to others is thought to be low. The decision to discontinue home isolation precautions should be made on a case-by-case basis, in consultation with healthcare providers. Quarantine: separates and restricts the movement of people who were exposed to a contagious disease to see if they become sick. If you have traveled out of the country or been exposed first-hand to a known positive case, self-quarantine for 14 days is recommended to avoid unknowingly spreading infection to others. You’re well and watching for symptoms such as fever above 100.4 F.

We would love to hear from you about your best strategies and what’s been helpful to you! Please let us know how we can best be a resource for you.

Peace, Dr Julie. Theresa and Corrie

03.13.2020

To our patients,

We are all being inundated daily, even hourly with information and updates on the constantly changing situation of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. It seems quite surreal but it is real and while we are called to take action in these unusual times, we are also called to stay calm and maintain perspective and use our tools: mind, body and spirit. We recognize that everyone is impacted in many different ways and we wanted to update you on what we are doing at Lake Travis Integrative Medicine and how we apply LIVE IT Philosophy to this very challenging situation.

LEARN:

Since the information is constantly evolving and also vulnerable to misinformation, the best way is to stay updated by reliable sources. Clearly this is a virus that has features that are unique and more virulent to earn the status of Pandemic by the World Health Organization and our behaviors can impact the spread.

Virulence and transmission will shift over time, in ways which we cannot predict.

Please stay safe & stay informed:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

https://www.who.int/news-room/q-a-detail/q-a-coronaviruses

http://www.austintexas.gov/COVID19

AT LTIM we are not equipped to address acute illness or fever at the office. We do not have masks and are not able to do testing for coronavirus. We are able and willing to help you via a Telemedicine visit if you are unsure what to do. If you have any doubt about whether you should come into the office due to your symptoms or your own concern over possible exposure- or you have a cough or fever, use Telemedicine. We will be following more diligent cleaning protocols in the office as well. If you are due for lab work but do not want to go to the lab at this time, talk to us and we will see if we can brainstorm alternatives. [as of 3/15/2020 we have gone 100% telemedicine/ virtual until further notice, please see updated information above]

Part of the LEARN aspect of this acronym, is to learn about your own tolerance for this information and limit the amount of time and media you are absorbing. Learn your information at a set and limited time daily and then go on, do something you like, breathe, notice the flowers blooming, take a walk…

INCORPORATE:

We are all being asked to more diligently incorporate things- such as washing our hands- we were hopefully already doing . Now we can do these tasks more mindfully and more often!

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and warm water are not available.

Incorporate creative ways to greet and connect with people. (elbow bump, foot tap)

As always incorporate healthy anti-inflammatory eating and plenty of sleep. We want you to help your immune system just as we do in the plans we provide our patients at their appointments. Incorporate the changes you already have in your health goals. We recognize this is a stressful time but when we react to uncertainty with fear, we weaken our immune systems.

VITALIZE:

Supplements have been selling out but these are not necessarily the “secret”.. Certainly Vitamins D, C and A have some evidence behind them and are effective in supporting our immune system. Remember to keep foundational principles alive and use any of your ‘go-to’ home vitamins/supplements to support a basic immune system.

A good resource for more information on boosting the immune system is the Institute for Functional Medicine: https://www.ifm.org/news-insights/boosting-immunity-functional-medicine-tips-prevention-immunity-boosting-covid-19-coronavirus-outbreak/

Vitalize yourself with some sunshine, time in nature or reaching out and doing a good deed for someone.

EXERCISE:

Keep moving your body. Mindful movement. Exercise helps your immune system! But please be mindful to keep a healthy balance, and not overdo it either! Aim for activities such as walking, yoga, swimming, and try to limit high intensity workouts during times when our immune system may be strained.

IMAGINE:

Practice positive thoughts. Do your daily meditation. Reset your autonomic nervous system with the 4-7-8 breathing exercise. Be mindful and aware how much of all of this can activate a high cortisol response, which can in turn activate our sympathetic nervous system and can impede overall healing, and health.

Spend some time doing some guided meditation. If you haven’t discovered them on our website, here is the link: https://laketravisintegrative.com/patient-links/

THANK:

The COVID-19 Pandemic is a HUGE opportunity for us to pause and be grateful for so much in our lives… for the gift of each day.. for this earth we live on .. in this time and this place. It is an opportunity for us to offer compassion for those that are impacted even more by this virus.

Let’s be thankful for our emergency medical system and those serving on the front lines and the health resources we have in our country and our community.

We are truly thankful for you, our patients and the journey we share together. This coronavirus situation is a rare and unique twist to our journey and we aspire to continue to serve you as we can on your health journey.

Peace,

Dr Julie, Theresa and Corrie