Current COVID-19 Restrictions
During the COVID pandemic the clinic is operating with normal hours but with “contactless” service. Dr. Bradley is currently conducting patient most consultations via video conferencing. We prefer using Skype (a free online service), but Zoom conferencing is also possible if Skype cannot work for you. If video conferencing is not technically feasible, a phone consultation may also be possible. For patients who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, in-person consultations may be available again. Please ask if that is of interest.
Established current patients can always contact Dr. Bradley by calling the office and leaving a voice mail, or by email. If the call is regarding healthcare management issues she will return your call as soon as she is able, regardless of regular office hours. If the call is regarding non-medical issues (scheduling appointments, etc.) expect a return call during the next regular clinic day.
A Naturopathic Prospective on COVID-19
As trained scientists, naturopathic doctors believe in the seriousness of this pandemic and the risks of COVID-19 to everyone all over the globe. We also believe that it is everyone’s responsibility to reduce this risk by following the current CDC recommendations on mask wearing and social distancing to protect yourself and everyone else. While infection rates dropping as more people have gotten vaccinated, we cannot let our guard down. This is especially true due to the new variants now found all over the world. It is important to remember that these new mutations will continue to occur as long as the virus is widely infecting people. The vaccines are beginning to help, but we are not out of the woods.
About the COVID-19 Vaccine
For some people the general issue of vaccinations creates a lot of concern. This has led to misinformation about their risks from both sides of the debate. As a naturopathic doctor I have never been a “pro-vaxxer”, nor am I an “anti-vaxxer”. I have always looked at each vaccine and its use as a “risk vs. benefit” issue – the risk of the vaccine vs. the risk of the disease in a particular individual. For this disease there is no question in my mind that getting a vaccine to protect yourself, your loved ones, and our community from the COVID-19 virus (SARS-CoV-2 virus), with rare exception, is the right thing to do. I am impressed with the technology in the mRNA vaccines (the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines) and recommend them. I believe they are as safe as any other vaccine, and seem to be safer than previous vaccines. If you are pregnant consult with your obstetrician or midwife before getting a COVID vaccine.
UPDATE on vaccines (5/1/21):
A very rare side-effect (blood clots – occurred in one in one million doses) has been recently reported in several under 50-year-old females from the newly available single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine. I am not as comfortable with this vaccine when we also have the mRNA vaccines (the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines) as alternatives. If you have already gotten the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, and it has been over 2 weeks since receiving it, do not worry, you are probably well-protected against the current variants of the COVID virus, and the current evidence is that you are no longer at risk for the side-effect.
The Johnson & Johnson vaccine uses a different technology from the mRNA vaccines. The J&J vaccine uses a common adenovirus as a “vector” to carry a small piece of DNA into your cells. The viral vector has be modified so it cannot reproduce and this DNA never comes in contact with your own DNA. Your cells will then use this snippet of DNA to make mRNA that will then be used to make the COVID antigen (the spike protein) that your immune system will be activated against. It also uses an adjuvant (an added chemical that enhances the immune response to the antigen). In contrast, the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are made directly from the mRNA (bypassing the viral vector and DNA steps), which is then used by your cells to make the spike protein that activates your immune system against COVID.
In my many years of practice I have been able to help people who have had significant reactions to vaccines. Fortunately, these vaccine reactions are really rare today has changes were made in the vaccines. It is normal to have temporary mild symptoms following a vaccine as your immune system gets activated against the vaccine target. These are a sign the vaccine is working. However, on a rare occasion a vaccine reaction is severe or lingers, it is then appropriate to seek naturopathic or homeopathic care.
It is also important to know that I have been able to help people with all kinds of viral infections, including recently COVID-19. However, preventing the infection is the best way to go. There is no guarantee that I can successfully treat you if you get COVID, but I can guarantee that you will be fine if you avoid getting infected.
So my best advice is to, first, continue to do everything in your power to follow the current CDC safety rules to prevent exposure to the virus and, second, get an mRNA COVID vaccine (the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine) when you can.