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Conemaugh Nason Adopts 'Zero-Visitation' Policy

Coronavirus Case Confirmed in Somerset County

 
Series: Coronavirus | Story 22

March 19, 2020



Conemaugh Memorial, Meyersdale and Nason medical centers are adopting a zero-visitation policy, with exceptions noted. This policy was already in effect at Memorial. Conemaugh Health System has confirmed that it has identified a second patient who tested positive for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). The hospital system is sharing this information because this patient is the first reported case in Somerset County. This patient was transferred to another facility for continuity of care.

GENERAL HOSPITAL AND VISITOR GUIDELINES

Conemajugh hospital and office visitor guidelines have been updated. Signs have been placed in entryways and offices. Please read and follow these recommendations.

This is effective for Miners and Nason March 25, 2020. It is effective for Memorial and Meyersdale immediately.

All Conemaugh inpatient facilities are adopting a zero-visitor policy. Until otherwise notified, everyone entering the facility should come through one of two entry points - the Main Entrance or the Emergency Department. All other entry points will be locked and will be badge access only.

Main Entrance: Open 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Memorial) 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Meyersdale)

Emergency Department: Open 24 hours for emergency care

Exceptions: End of life care, pediatrics (parents/guardians allowed), labor & delivery (signficant other allowed), and the Emergency Department (one assistive companion allowed).

Outpatients may have one assistive companion.

Screening Process: Upon entering the facility, everyone – including our employees, providers, contractors and volunteers – will be screened with questions regarding respiratory symptoms and travel history based on CDC recommendations. Visitors and patients will be screened at their point of entry into the facility. Based on this screening, individuals who don’t pass the screening will be asked to leave the facility and seek advice from their primary care physician. Visitors and patients who pass the screening will be provided with a wristband to signal they’ve been screened.

Second Case Confirmed

Conemaugh Health System is committed to protecting the health and safety of everyone who walks through our doors. We can confirm that we have identified a second patient who tested positive for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). We share this information because this patient is the first reported case in Somerset County. This patient was transferred to another facility for continuity of care.

Conemaugh states that it is continuing to work closely with the Pennsylvania Department of Health (PADOH) and following guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to ensure the safety of patients, the clinical teams at Conemaugh Memorial and Conemaugh Meyersdale who have been caring for this patient, and all those within the facility.

The hospital is prepared with the appropriate plans to detect, protect and respond. Conemaugh has been preparing for the potential of COVID-19 in the community for several weeks, building upon the emergency operations plan in place year-round.

Conemaugh officials said that they want to "reassure our communities that it is safe to come to the hospital should you or your family need care. We stand ready to serve you."

Conemaugh has taken the following measures to prepare, in accordance with CDC guidelines:

• Piloting telehealth services

• Rescheduling elective and non-urgent cases for at least 30 days, when deemed clinically appropriate.

• Restrictions have been placed on visitors, visiting hours and entry points, and screening is in place at every entry. Please see the section on visitor guidelines.

• Each Conemaugh hospital has a COVID-19 task force and emergency command center in place.

• Public areas areas in the hospitals, such as gift shops or cafes, have been closed or modified to decrease contact points.

• Prevention posters and screening alerts are posted prominently throughout our facilities.

• Personal protective equipment is available, including face masks and eye protection, for example.

• Sinks and hand hygiene products are easily accessible throughout our facilities.

• Hospital personnel are getting regular updates and participating in preparedness exercises.

• Our website has been updated with information for the public.

• Non-essential meetings and groups have been cancelled or rescheduled.

To help prevent the spread of this and other viruses in the community, remember to wash your hands frequently, cover your cough, and disinfect surfaces regularly. For more information, contact the Pennsylvania Department of Health or visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website at http://www.cdc.gov.

Conemaugh's coronavirus website is at http://www.conemaugh.org/coronavirus

 

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