COVID-19 is placing stress on Canada's public health system. Our clinic is starting to offer virtual care to make sure that we can continue to care for our patients safely and effectively. This means that we will be using video and audio technologies for some patient visits rather than asking all patients to come into our office. Some of these technologies are provided by the Province. Others have been provided by vendors like Google, or Apple to help make discussions with your care provider as easy as possible during these difficult times. Some health concerns can be addressed with virtual care alone, but in some cases your doctor may ask you to visit a hospital or other health care facility if necessary, for a physical examination.

We do our best to make sure that any information you give to us during virtual care visits is private and secure, but no video or audio tools are ever completely secure. There is an increased security risk that your health information may be intercepted or disclosed to third parties when using video or audio communications tools. To help us keep your information safe and secure, you can:

Understand that emails, calls, or texts you receive are not secure in the same way as a private appointment in an exam room.

Use a private computer/device (i.e., not an employer's or third party's computer/device), secure accounts, and a secure internet connection. For example, using a personal and encrypted email account is more secure than an unencrypted email account, and your access to the Internet on your home network will generally be more secure than an open guest Wi-Fi connection.

You should also understand that electronic communication is not a substitute for in-person communication or clinical examinations, where appropriate, or for attending the Emergency Department when needed (including for any urgent care that may be required).

If you are concerned about using video or audio tools for virtual care, you can ask our office to arrange for you to visit a different healthcare provider or other health care center where you can be seen in person. However, please note that visiting a health care provider in person comes with a higher risk of coming into contact with COVID-19 and the possibility of spreading the virus.

By providing your information, you agree to let us collect, use, or disclose your personal health information through video or audio communications (while following applicable privacy laws) in order to provide you with care. In particular, the following means of electronic communication may be used (identify all that apply): email, videoconferencing (including Skype, Facetime, etc.), text messaging (including instant messaging), website/portal, OnCall.

April 1, 2020

A note to our patients. We have suspended all in-office visits at this time due to COVID 19. However, if you have an appointment currently booked with our office you will receive a call 2 days prior to that appointments. We will advise you how we will be able to proceed. Wishing you and your family safety and vitality during this challenging time.

If you need a renewal your prescriptions during the COVID-19 #stayathome period, please have your pharmacy fax your renewal request. Our fax number is 905-639-7647. Be well!

Update About Our Office During This Outbreak of Corona Virus : March 15, 2020

On the advice of the Ministry of Health we are changing our office protocols to ensure minimization of risk to our patients and our staff.

Starting the week of March 16, 2020 we will try to change as many patients visits as we can to virtual electronic visits. Initially most will be by phone. There are some patients who have already made arrangements to come to the office and, if they do, we will see them, once again minimizing risks by using frequent hand washing and minimized personal contact.

For the majority of scheduled patients we will set up visits through OnCall Health. One of the problems with phone visits is that each person requires individualized attention and some visits unexpectedly may take longer than others. We will make every effort to keep on schedule but at times we may be delayed.

Dr Lawrence Komer
Medical Director
The Komer Clinics

COVID-19 Annoucement | Office Updates

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You slipped, fell, and hit your head. Now, you have a bit of a headache, but you were not dazed or unconscious. A bit tired, you just feel “off” for a couple of days. Over time, it seems to get better. Within a few days or weeks, you feel right back to normal. However, the reality is that you may have had a concussion. There is no blood test to diagnose concussion. There are questionnaires such as ImPACT or SCAT3 you can use, and they might suggest a concussion. You may be surprised to
learn that often one is not instantly sure.

Perhaps, you were involved in a motor vehicle accident. Shaken up and sore, you thank Heaven nothing more serious happened. There is that bit of a sore neck, but this mild whiplash can go away.

Were you someone involved in sports? Did you collide with someone? Were you checked into the boards playing hockey or lacrosse? You missed a few shifts. Then you were back in the game. It would not be unusual if you do not remember very much of what happened, or the rest of the day.

Was soccer (or football as it is known in much of the world) your game? You never had any problems during practice or the game heading the ball. Over many years, this was part of your game. No harm done. Or was there?

As a young child, did you fall down the stairs and hit your head? There could be bad news associated with each of these events.

Every one of them could have been a concussion.

It is not difficult to diagnose a concussion when a serious event has taken place. If you hurt your head, you might have problems in two or three weeks, and have been lingering effects such as headache, or head pressure or fatigue, or difficulties concentrating, the diagnosis of concussion is fairly certain.

It turns out that repeated mild blows to the head injuries can add up to long-term difficulties, triggering a change in brain function. The more severe the injury is the greater risk of developing serious problems.

When I speak about sports concussions, people think about boxing, football, hockey, lacrosse or motocross. However, do you know that one of the most dangerous sports is cheerleading? Concussions are frequent in many sports, like gymnastics.

A helmet does not save you from a concussion. It may save a skull fracture or a laceration but when your head accelerates then suddenly stops, your brain hits against the inside of the skull. That can cause a concussion.

This all connects to what you hear on the news about the dangers of post-concussion syndrome. There is a growing understanding that this may also create an increased risk of things like Parkinson’s disease and chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE).

First responders and those serving in the military have double the risk. People in public safety roles are often in situations where they experience head injuries. They are placed in dangerous situations where they may be struck with objects, or assaulted by people they are trying to apprehend. Traveling at high speeds in an emergency, to help or protect others, they may crash their vehicles. Military personnel may also be hit by objects or be subject to blast injuries. When a bomb goes off, there is a concussive wave that can cause multiple hits to the head and shake the brain. All of these events can cause concussion or traumatic brain injury that often leads to long-term problems.

Beyond that, this group of brave individuals often witness horrible events involving death, or near-death experiences that scar them emotionally.

They try to put what they have seen and felt into a far corner of the brain, hoping not to think of the events.

For the military, and our first responders, their work experiences certainly can cause PTSD. It is my belief that extreme stress such as PTSD can also alter brain chemistry even without a physical injury.

This can lead to a large variety of problems both short-term and long-term.

It is especially likely that they will experience conditions such as depression, anger, anxiety, and fatigue. Not coincidentally, these are very common symptoms of brain injury and PTSD. A common link may be poor hormone levels.

So, there is bad news. The bad news may come right away with obvious symptoms at the initial diagnosis, or the bad news may slowly become evident over months, years, and even decades.

There is more bad news. Treatment solutions are often poor for all of these problems in many centers around the world.

There is good news.

Many times, people are advised to be tough and “shake it off.” They have been told that their tests are all fine and so they are fine; there is nothing wrong.

Well, there is something wrong.

More and more, the medical community is recognizing concussions, traumatic brain injury (TBI), and PTSD. Patients are finally being acknowledged with the real problems they are facing.

Many have been told that there is no treatment.

Well, there is.

At the Komer Brain Institute, we apply the latest science and treatment for
brain injuries and PTSD.

Concussions can happen to anyone, no matter your age or stage of life.

Are you prepared if it is you?

Phone: 905-639-2571
Fax: 905-639-7647
Cedar Springs Medical Professional Centre 960 Cumberland Ave. Suite E
Burlington, ON Canada L7N 3J6