COVID-19 Update

Dear Patients and Families,

The University of Florida Pediatric Neurology team would like to update you on the COVID-19 situation.

First and foremost, please know that our team is available for you and your child during this public health emergency.

Second, the Florida Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are the most authoritative sources for information regarding the epidemic. The dedicated websites may be found at:

Third, it is important that we be able to contact you when needed.  If your phone number or home address has changed since your child’s last clinic visit, please call our office at 352-273-8920 to update your information.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs):

What should I do if I think my child has COVID-19?

The main symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, muscle aches, and cough. If you have symptoms, contact your primary care doctors and they will direct those in need for testing.  Only those who meet certain criteria will be tested, though criteria are subject to change.  The Pediatric Neurology team is not able to offer testing for COVID-19 in our clinics at this time.

Should my child still come for scheduled neurology appointments?

Our clinics remain open and fully staffed at this time. However, should you prefer to be seen via telemedicine (video conference), several of our health care providers have telemedicine capability, and we are rapidly expanding this to our entire team.  These visits can be done from your home.  If you would prefer to change your appointment to a telemedicine visit, please contact our office at 352-273-8920. Depending on the circumstances, a telemedicine visit may need to be scheduled for a different date and time than your original appointment. If your child is not feeling well on the day of a scheduled appointment, they should be seen by a primary care provider and their pediatric neurology appointment should be rescheduled.

My child has a neurological disease. Are they at greater risk of getting COVID-19?

Neurological diseases by themselves do not carry an increased risk of developing COVID-19. However, certain complications and treatments linked to neurological diseases may impact your child’s ability to handle an infection such as COVID-19. For example, some chronic neurological disorders may be complicated by heart and lung problems and some chronic neurological disorders are treated with medications that suppress the immune system.  In general, it is important to minimize your child’s social contacts. We recommend that all patients, regardless of their diagnoses, continue to practice common-sense measures to avoid the risk of getting infected with or spreading the virus.  These include:

  • Wash your hands frequently
  • Avoid large crowds or public gatherings
  • Stay home if you are sick

Should I send my child to school?

We recommend following the direction of your child’s local school system; many schools are currently closed.  However, if your child has a chronic neurological disorder, extra precautions may be needed.

Should I stock up on my medications?

Yes, we recommend that everyone have a 2-3 week supply of medications on hand in case they are forced to be quarantined for up to 14 days.  Our team is happy to provide refills though some insurances may not want to cover early refills.  The best way to request refill prescriptions is via MyChart.  If you do not have a MyChart account set up, PLEASE set one up at your child’s next visit.  Unfortunately, we cannot sign families up for MyChart access over the phone for pediatric patients.  Please be aware that phone wait times may be longer than usual, and that it may take up to 48 hours for non-urgent refills to be sent to the pharmacy. You can reach us at 352.273.8920.

We hope that all the measures that are being implemented will reduce the spread of the virus and lessen its impact on you, your family, and our community.

All our best wishes,

The UF Health Pediatric Neurology Team