GLEN COVE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) -- People staying at home to avoid exposure to the coronavirus may also be avoiding their regular health check-ups, so a Long Island doctor is taking his services to them.
Under the backdrop of St. Patrick's Church in Glen Cove, a group of local cardiologists is now using a bus as a mobile health clinic. Dr. Perry Frankel and his team are going to community centers and apartment complexes in urban areas of Long Island and Queens.
"Heart attacks kill somebody every 37 to 42 seconds, corona every 17 minutes in New York. I said we can't forget about the patients' internal medicine and cardiology problems and also the hospitals are loaded," Frankel said.
"We find that in those urban environments are the neighborhoods where the virus spreads most virulently," state Assemblyman Charles Lavine added.
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They are using social distancing, one patient at a time, and sanitizing between each checkup. It is a slow go, but worth the wait, said members of the Edwards family of Glen Cove.
"The personal touch is very important. He can actually check and see how you're feeling rather than just trying to do it over the phone," Lance Edwards said.
"This fancy bus that we bought for $80,000 and put together ourselves can do everything from an EKG to bloods to history of physical, stress test. ... We pick up a lot of aneurysms on the bus," Frankel said.
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The public appreciates the cardiologists' efforts.
"Great being able to come out here instead of having to risk disease. I think that it's much safer and much easier," McKenzie Edwards said.
"People are very nervous. I've seen people that never had panic attacks in their life, [but] with this corona, this unknown," Frankel said. "We listen to patients. We talk to patients. We let them tell us their fears and they go home, thank you."
The mobile medical clinic plans to hit the hot spots where there is the greatest concern. Next week, it will be in Hempstead Village.
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