We’re excited to announce that our practice offers 24/7 on-demand virtual visits with a team of Privia providers to provide care for you via secure video conferencing if we’re not available. Click here to learn more about Privia Virtual Clinic.
Medicare’s annual open enrollment period is coming up! To help make sure you find the best plan possible, Savii Health has partnered with a dedicated, objective agent.
Do you feel like your co-pays are too high?
Beginning on October 15, you have an opportunity to shop for a new Medicare plan for 2022.
As you may know, there are so many plans out there, so many new and different carriers, and they are constantly changing. There is some chance you may be on an older, more expensive plan, and you may be eligible for benefits you are not currently enjoying.
Introducing Real Senior Management
Real Senior Management is an independent insurance agency, which means that they do not represent any particular carrier. Your relationship to them will remain independent of your relationship to Savii Health. And their services are free to you. The goal is to make sure that you get the best Medicare Advantage or Medicare Supplement plan for your family and financial situation.
Schedule a Consultation Today
An agent from Real Senior Management will be happy to meet with you at our office or they can visit you at home to help you compare plans and find the best fit. Call this number to schedule your free consultation: 912-224-9353 or visit their website to submit an inquiry.
Experts are predicting a bad flu season, and Drs. Bradley, Gaskin and Halpern strongly urge you to get a flu shot.
COVID continues to put stress on the heath care system in Savannah, South Georgia and the Low Country. The best way you can help is to avoid the hospital. Unfortunately, we are expecting a particularly severe cold and flu season. Please consider getting a flu shot today.
Why is flu season expected to be bad this year?
Schools and businesses have reopened. People are traveling again. But some of us seem to have let our guard down against COVID-19.
Usually, the seasonal wave of influenza is easier to handle when some portion of the population has a natural immunity from getting exposed or infected in the previous year. Since many Americans spent last fall and winter quarantined and/or socially distanced, fewer people than normal came down with the flu. That means an above-average number of people are at risk for contracting the flu now.
Experts are therefore predicting that the cold and flu season could be worse than usual.
Who should get a flu shot?
All persons aged 6 months of age and older are recommended for annual flu vaccination, with rare exceptions. Vaccination is particularly important for our senior citizens, patients with chronic conditions, and other people who are at higher risk of developing serious flu complications.
Is it safe to get a flu shot at the same time I get the COVID-19 vaccine?
Absolutely. The CDC has said that it is now perfectly fine to get your COVID-19 vaccine (first shot, second shot, or booster) at the same time as you receive your flu shot. We are making that easy: just click here and schedule a flu shot. We can talk about your vaccine status at that time and discuss whether or not you qualify for a COVID-19 booster shot.
Who is eligible for a COVID-19 booster now?
The CDC’s new guidance allows third doses of the Pfizer vaccine for people 65 and older. People living in long-term care settings and those 50 to 64 with underlying conditions qualify. Several other groups of people, including those in high-risk occupational and institutional settings (hospitals and doctors offices, for instance) are also eligible for booster shots.
How do I schedule an appointment to get a flu shot and/or COVID-19 vaccine?
As we enter the colder months of fall, doctors are urging people to get their flu shot in order to cut down on hospital visits.
- If you have not had your COVID-19 shots, now is the time: click here to sign up.
- If you would like to get on the waiting list for a COVID-19 booster: click here.
- And if you would like to self-schedule your flu shot for 2021: click here.
Thank you for your help,
Your Savii Health Team
Dr. Bradley has been making news again. He wants you to get the vaccine.
Savii Health’s own Dr. Paul S. Bradley appeared recently on WTOC (and elsewhere) to sound the alarm about rising COVID cases in Savannah and the coastal region. You can click here to watch the July update, but we are now in September and the new wave of cases rages on.
“It’s still a very frightening situation,” Dr. Bradley says. “In Chatham County we have twice as many people in the hospital with Covid than we had on the worst day since this all started last March. The only good news is for those who have been vaccinated – over 90% of the inpatients had not had a shot. It’s not too late though…”
Savii Health’s COVID Response
As the number of cases of COVID-19 from the Delta variant continues to rise in our region, we want to keep you updated on our safety protocols.
We strongly encourage patients to utilize Virtual Visits. Any patient with COVID-19 symptoms or a positive COVID-19 test will be required to schedule a Virtual Visit to help contain the spread of the virus.
Currently, we are limiting the number of people that enter our offices and requesting that no minors accompany patients at this time. Patients are allowed one spouse, family member, caregiver, or guest (18 years of age or older.)
We encourage you to wait in your car after checking in at the front desk. We will call you when it is time to come inside. A mask is required to enter the building.
We ask that you help us stop the spread of COVID-19. We care about our patients and the community and ask that you help us by doing the following:
- Wear a mask.
- Practice social distancing.
- Wash your hands frequently.
- If you have not received the COVID-19 vaccination, we strongly encourage you to schedule one as soon as possible.
- Sign up for the upcoming COVID-19 booster.
A Note from Your Providers
We ask for your patience during what continues to be a difficult time for medical professionals everywhere. Be assured, our team is working tirelessly to provide quality care with a limited staff. Please be understanding of the long hours they have worked with little or no relief during this pandemic.
We are doing our best to answer every phone call. With an extreme influx in the number of calls to our offices, we advise using online scheduling via our website or myPrivia patient portal for the fastest and least frustrating results. You can also communicate with us using the myPrivia patient portal to prevent any long hold times or having to leave us a voicemail.
Please remember, these protocols and procedures are in place to protect the health of our patients, employees, and the community. We genuinely appreciate your patience and cooperation as we work hard to meet your needs in a safe manner.
Thank you and stay safe,
Your Savii Health Team
Happy (belated) St. Patrick’s Day from the Savii Health Team. No parade this year, but we can all look forward to next year once enough of us have been vaccinated!
Americans now have three excellent choices when it comes to getting vaccinated. At Savii Health we have limited access to the Moderna vaccine that we (and you) helped to test, but there are numerous ways to get your vaccination-and as of March 15, many more of you are eligible!
In other news, we have two new providers to serve you. Read on for more from our conversation with Dr. Paul Bradley:
WHAT VACCINE SHOULD YOU GET?
Ask Dr. Paul Bradley and he will tell it to you straight: “My firm stance is every day without a vaccine is an opportunity to catch covid and die. The first opportunity to get a vaccine—take it—don’t worry about the details, the first one you can get is the right one.”
More of you are now eligible. The State of Georgia recently expanded eligibility for the COVID-19 vaccine to include all adults sixteen and up (!), including healthcare workers, first responders, school staff, law enforcement, firefighters, and those with serious medical conditions, including anyone with a BMI of over 25.
If you are a BCG patient, you can sign up on our website HERE or by clicking the link below.
Dr. Bradley says that if you are worried that you are going to feel bad, you can take Tylenol before or after your shot (or both).
NOTE: We do not control scheduling and have been receiving only very limited quantities of the vaccine. Scheduling is done by a third party. Just sign up at our website and you will be notified when it is your turn. You can also use the state’s vaccine locator by clicking here.
WE ARE NOW SAVII HEALTH
We have welcomed two new providers onto our staff, and with new faces comes renewed energy and commitment to you—and a new name.
Why Savii Health? Because smart doctors make for savvy patients and we have added two bright, young STARS to our team:
We are thrilled to welcome Dr. Brooke Halpern to the practice.
In addition, Briana Evans has joined our staff as a Physician Assistant.
“Brooke basically just got here, and it is just like she was always here,” Dr. Bradley says of practicing with Dr. Halpern, who happens to be his daughter. “I couldn’t be more proud of her… And Bri is smart, efficient, and a wonderful addition to the practice. They gang up on me a little bit, but I guess that’s to be expected.”
Come meet them, and come see us, and thank you for helping us all get through this past year.
Your Savii Team
In celebrating 30 years as Savannah’s Hometown doctors, we are pleased to welcome two amazing new providers and to announce a name change:
BCG Medical Group is now
Over the past two years, Drs. Bradley and Gaskin have remade this practice. We listened to your feedback and reconsidered everything about the in-office experience. We hired new management, made some overdue staffing changes, and partnered with Privia Health to streamline your access to care, and you have told us that you are impressed with the results.
Now, Savii Health is pleased to welcome two new providers to our team:
- We are thrilled to introduce Dr. Brooke Halpern to you. Dr. Halpern is a board-certified Internist specializing in adult primary care, obesity, osteoporosis, and women’s health. She also happens to be Dr. Bradley’s daughter.
- We welcome Briana Evans, who joins our staff as a Physician Assistant. Also a native of Savannah, Briana’s practice is driven by her interest in the role of nutrition, meditation, and exercise in the management of chronic conditions.
We love what we do because health care changes rapidly, which means new technologies, new research, new medicines and new treatments. We chose Savii Health because smart doctors make for savvy patients: informed, alert, and confident that we have got your back.
Thank you for your loyalty, and we look forward to seeing you soon.
Are you wanting the Coronavirus vaccine? Click here to add your name to the list.
Even as businesses reopen, millions of Americans have lost their jobs due to Covid-19. So how can you help a friend or family member get back on their feet?
As we begin our fifth week of Savannah’s #stayathome order, those who have lost jobs or whose loved ones may be temporarily unemployed are really hurting. The stress of coronavirus is really hitting home.
Mental health is an important part of overall well-being, and so we have asked Dr. Davana Pilczuk to offer some suggestions for dealing with coronavirus stress, including the challenge of losing one’s job and the stress of being apart from others.
How can you help someone you love deal with the stress of being laid off?
First, just listen to them. When people come to us to vent or complain, we tend to start giving out advice. Try to do the opposite. If a loved one calls you up and tells you the painful news, just listen. Fight the urge to lecture or advise and just truly listen.
Questions Calm the Brain
When we get upset, it’s hard to think logically and see next steps. We react with our primitive brain, where fear and anxiety reside. By asking questions, we use the prefrontal cortex, or the logical part of our brains, which is the part we need to help us make some rational decisions. Questions like, “What are you most upset about?” “What are some old hobbies that might occupy your time?” actually help calm people down.
Don’t assume you know what someone needs when they turn to you for help. Instead, ask what help looks like. Asking something like, “How exactly can I help you?” in order to clearly understand what’s needed will make the conversation more productive, for both of you.
Well wishes are nice to hear, but someone who is truly struggling will need more than that. If the person who comes to you for help is important to you, or has helped you in the past, then step up. Hire them for a little side business. Let them tweak your webpage, walk your dog, or cut your grass. Whatever it is, actually provide them some active form of help.
People Need Purpose
When someone you care about is hurting due to coronavirus stress or temporary unemployment, more than their pocketbook has been injured. We derive a great deal of purpose and value from our work and when that is taken from us, we suffer an emotional loss.
Be kind in these moments, listen, ask questions and remind your loved one that they still have great value in this world and you are here to help them through this.
Are you worried about what might happen to your finances, your loved ones, or your own health, and the future… you are not alone.
Most of us will be okay. Among those who do contract Covid-19, most people’s chances of surviving the disease is high.
Nevertheless, given the situation we face, you might find yourself very much on edge. We are all feeling a sense of loss. But by focusing on the resources you do have and the things you can do, you can begin to manage that anxiety.
Savii Health has asked Dr. Davana Pilczuk to offer some advice on how to reduce coronavirus anxiety:
Concern about WHAT IF
Most fear is about right now. Anxiety, however, is always about things that haven’t happened yet.
Anxiety usually starts with the words “what if.” What if I lose my job? What if my spouse brings the virus home? What if I never see a certain family member again? Learn to recognize when you are over-focused on these “what if” questions.
A Perceived Threat
Notice the word “perceived” here. Not all things we perceive to be scary or threatening actually are. Public speaking is most people’s biggest fear, yet there really is nothing truly harmful or dangerous about talking in front of people. Our brains just overly focus on the ‘what ifs’ and we end up perceiving public speaking as being something terrifying. So pay attention to when you are perceiving a threat to be worse than it really is.
Along with over-perceiving the threat, we also underestimate our ability to handle the threat. We all have resources -knowledge, experience, skills – to help us handle difficult situations in life, but we forget about them when we feel anxious.
Two Key Questions to help manage coronavirus anxiety:
When you find yourself feeling anxious, ask yourself these two important questions:
- Is this a real threat and
- Do I have the ability to handle it?
The fact is, most perceived threats aren’t as bad as our minds make them out to be, and we tend to underestimate our abilities to handle the tough stuff in life. Every time you begin to feel stressed about something, big or little, ask yourself these two questions and walk yourself down from feeling anxious.
See also: Dealing with Loneliness during #StayHome
Our relationships with others help us thrive and survive. So what can you do when you are cut off from loved ones and dealing with Stay at Home loneliness?
You probably know someone who in “solo quarantine” and dealing with loneliness during this fifth week of Savannah’s #stayathome order. Maybe YOU are alone, prohibited from seeing children, grandchildren, or others you depend on.
Being social is about finding ways to connect with one another so that we can all share in the human experience. Television does NOT count. So have asked Dr. Davana Pilczuk for some advice on how to be social when distant.
Here are some ways to connect with loved ones and others during a time when we can’t see one another in person:
Schedule Calls with Friends
Schedule personal calls or FaceTime meetings like it’s your job! And don’t minimize these meetings because they are ‘personal’. These personal calls are exceptionally important to our physical and mental health right now, so make friendships a priority just like you would a staff meeting.
Adopt a Pet
Many animal shelters are understaffed right now and unable to fully care for all their animals, so why not foster a pet to keep you company for the next few weeks? Pets are wonderful sources of love and are a welcome distraction from many of the stresses we are facing. Plus, it’s hard to feel lonely when a Great Dane is lying next to you.
Meet Your Backyard Buddy
Look for your neighbors when they are out in the yard or on the street and say, “Hello!”
Be sure to ask if they are okay and strike up a conversation you might not otherwise have had (while staying at least 6 feet apart). Realizing you aren’t alone in this will make you feel better.
Beat Stay at Home Loneliness with Technology
There are so many great apps to help us connect. Download FaceTime or Zoom and set up a Wednesday cooking class with your gal pals. Friday nights can be “Pictionary” night with the grandkids. On Sundays, many churches are hosting virtual services online via Facebook Live. Many artists are performing on social media – pick one and plan to share it with someone you love.
Once upon a time people actually wrote letters to each other. They would exchange endearing notes, cards and drawings expressing how much they missed each other and looked forward to being together.
Why not reignite that tradition with the special people in your life, because who doesn’t love getting a love note in the mail to make them feel special? If you need stamps, buy them online and have them delivered to your door.
You may also be interested in: Dealing with Anxiety during Coronavirus
A new partnership in support of your health.
As of March 31, 2020, Drs. Bradley and Gaskin have joined with Privia Health in order to improve your access to care.
Your provider will not change. We still work closely with both major hospital systems in Savannah, Chatham County, and South Georgia. But you should notice dramatic improvements your ability to get care when you need it – FAST – with less waiting.
“Privia Health’s smart tech is a game changer,” says Dr. Bradley. “Our new systems support your health not only in our office, but at specialists’ offices, at the pharmacy counter, and even in the hospital, providing the information your providers need at lightning speed.”
What is Privia Health?
Privia Health is a national organization of physicians and health care providers.
As a Privia provider in Savannah, Savii Health now has access to tools and technologies to keep us better connected with you. This will allow our providers to remain 100% focused on patient care.
Better yet, with over 360 providers across the state, and a large national network, we can now provide a seamless experience when it comes to referrals, testing, imaging, and prompt access to your health records.
What does it mean for Savii Health?
Advances in technology mean that we are living longer, healthier lives, but for independent health care providers, keeping pace can be expensive. Indeed, the “busy work” of administrating care and dealing with insurers has overwhelmed some practices.
This partnership is a game-changer, freeing up time for Drs Bradley and Gaskin and our other providers to do what they do best.
As Russell Gray of Privia says, “The goal is to keep the doctor-patient relationship at the center of the healthcare delivery system. Everything else should work to support that.”
See your provider from the comfort and safety of your home.
As part of our coordinated response to Covid-19, Savii Health is pleased to announce virtual visits with our providers.
You can now meet with your preferred provider from your desktop, laptop, smartphone or tablet. Of course, there will be times when it makes more sense to come into the office, but for follow-up appointments, management of chronic conditions, and other “check-ins,” we can connect virtually. No more waiting room!
- If you need immediate attention or are having trouble breathing, please call 911.
- Most insurance companies now cover virtual visits. (Please call your insurance company to confirm coverage.
- Schedule anytime for visits during our regular office hours: 7AM to 5PM Monday through Friday.
- Please notify us at least 24 hours prior to your appointment to cancel or reschedule.
WHAT DO YOU NEED TO FOR A VIRTUAL VISIT?
CANCELLING YOUR APPOINTMENT
If you need to cancel or reschedule, please do so 24 hours before your appointment in order to avoid a $25 cancellation fee.
A message from doctors Bradley, Gaskin, and Halpern
As Covid-19 continues to impact our communities, you can rely on Savii Health to serve your health care needs.
We are OPEN, accepting appointments from patients and new patients. As of March 23, we are now offering “virtual visits” (click here to learn more). Additionally, we have enhanced our intake and screening process, as well as our in-office sterilization and sanitization procedures, in order to better protect our providers, our staff, and you.
Below, we discuss the changes at Savii Health and how you can stay clear of the coronavirus.
What is Covid-19?
COVID-19 is a highly-contagious coronavirus. Symptoms range from mild to severe, and infection may result in death. The following symptoms most often appear within 14 days after exposure:
- Shortness of breath
If you are having trouble breathing or experience persistent pain or pressure in the chest, please call 911 immediately.
The preferred source for information on the coronavirus and its spread is the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website. Click here to read CDC recommendations for how to protect yourself, and what to do if you think you are sick.
New Service: Savii Health Telehealth
As part of our coordinated response to Covid-19, Savii Health is pleased to announce virtual visits with our providers. These virtual consultations are now covered by most insurance companies. (We ask that you please call your insurance company to confirm coverage.) Click here to learn more about virtual visits or to schedule.
Protecting Your Health
Savii Health is taking all possible precautions in order to protect the health our patients, providers, and staff. In addition to virtual visits, we have implemented the following enhanced intake and screening procedures.
- Every patient will be required to answer COVID-specific screening questions (as you would at the ER).
- Every patient will be provided with a face mask upon entry.
- We encourage vulnerable persons to wait in their car after checking in at the front desk.
- Our staff is disinfecting doorknobs and surfaces before and after every patient visit.
- As always, our providers observe the strictest hygiene and sterilization regimens.
We will continue to review and update these measures daily.
Protect Yourself and Others from COVID-19
Please visit the CDC website to learn more about how to protect yourself from infection.
Principally, the CDC recommends that you clean your hands often:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
- If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
The CDC also advises that we avoid close contact with people who are sick, and that we put distance between yourself and other people if COVID-19 is spreading in your community. This is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.
Savii Health recommends that you observe state and local guidelines as, together, we work to end the spread of COVID-19.