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Putting the right COVID-19 precautions in place

Putting the right COVID-19 precautions in place

APRIL 3, 2020 UPDATE:
FOR THE LATEST INFORMATION ON COVID-19, VISIT THE CARLE COVID-19 RESOURCES PAGE

Carle wants to keep you informed of rapidly changing guidance and encourages people to use the Carle COVID-19 hotline at (217) 902-6100 to have your COVID-19 questions answered.

 

How are Carle and the region prepared for the virus that causes COVID-19?

Carle constantly works to be as prepared as possible. While scenarios are always unique, it is our obligation as a regional health system and Level I Trauma Center to work every day to be ready for whatever our community needs. 

Carle continually conducts education and drills to be prepared for these types of public health emergencies. We remain in close contact with our region’s healthcare partners and work together to ensure we have information and supplies.

 

What should I do if I suspect I have been exposed to the virus that causes COVID-19?

Call our COVID-19 hotline at (217) 902-6100 for answers to your questions and to discuss your symptoms. 

Seek medical care right away, if you have:

  • A fever, dry cough or difficulty breathing and
  • Recently traveled to the affected areas or
  • Been around someone suspected of having or confirmed to have COVID-19. 

Use our online screening tool to help assess and recommend any necessary action. The tool asks a series of questions to determine your risk and provides guidance on how, where or if you should seek care.
 
Should you have additional questions, we ask you to call your healthcare provider or facility prior to arrival. You may also call our Carle COVID-19 hotline at (217) 902-6100.

Call ahead to your medical care provider so they can properly prepare for your arrival.  

 

Screening

Our organization has plans in place to assess patients virtually before they enter a healthcare facility.

  • “Respiratory Treatment Centers” are available in various forms at all of our Emergency Departments and Convenient Cares throughout our system to screen patients before they enter a facility potentially exposing others.
  • Carle offers virtual visits to assess patients with symptoms.
  • Patients may use our online COVID-19 screening tool at carle.org. A smart form will guide patients through a series of questions to assess their symptoms and risk and provide guidance on how, where or if a patient should seek care.
  • Patients may call the Carle COVID-19 hotline at (217) 902-6100

 

Testing

It remains Carle’s top priority to best care for our community by promptly identifying the COVID-19 virus while minimizing exposure to others. Carle continues to prioritize testing based on state health official guidance. Health officials do not recommend testing for mildly ill or asymptomatic people. 

  • If think you have COVID-19 and your illness is mild, and you are not older or do not have an underlying health condition of concern, you do not need to see your doctor in person and you do not need to be tested.
  • A positive test for a mildly ill, otherwise healthy person will not change how your doctor will care for you but will protect others. 
  • Like other healthcare organizations, Carle has opened a designated a testing COVID-19 site for approved patients and your provider will offer direction.
  • In order to get patients their test results as quickly as possible, Carle will release a negative COVID-19 result automatically through MyCarle shortly after the results are available to their providers. In most cases, this is 24-48 hours. A text or email prompts the patient to login to view results. If a patient doesn’t have MyCarle, they receive a mailed letter. If a patient tests positive for COVID-19, the appropriate public health department will contact the patient directly. 
 

What hospital entrances are open to the public?

Carle Foundation Hospital in Urbana, IL
  • Emergency Department
  • Orchard Street entrance
  • South Clinic Cancer Center

Carle Hoopeston Regional Health Center in Hoopeston, IL
  • Emergency Department Registration 

Richland Memorial Hospital in Olney, IL
  • Main Entrance until 5 p.m.
  • Emergency Department
 

What is Carle's current visitor policy?

For the safety of patients, staff and community, Carle has made the difficult decision to limit visitors and support people in our facilities.

For Outpatient appointments (Primary Care, Family Medicine, Specialty Services, Dermatology, etc.) that require a driver for your appointment, we recommend they wait outside of the facility. If you have additional family members involved in your plan of care, we can include them by phone.

Outpatient procedures (for example, a colonoscopy) may have one support person, but the support person may not accompany patient to a hospital floor if admitted.

During COVID-19, visitors are limited to the following circumstances:

  • Patients who are dying very soon can have one immediate family member at their bedside at a time. This person may rotate with another from outside the building. Immediate family includes spouse or partner, parents, siblings and children. For safety of all, grandchildren and in-laws are not permitted.  
  • Patients requesting last rites will be connected with pastoral care.
  • Major trauma patients going to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) may have one adult support person (a total of two support people may rotate outside the building). 
  • Inpatient Rehab patients may have one support person who will receive home-care instructions.  

During COVID-19, visitors in OB are limited to the following circumstances:

  • You will be limited to 1 support person for the length of your stay in the hospital
  • Support people will be screened prior to entry to the hospital- support persons who are symptomatic will not be allowed on-site
  • We will be periodically re-screening support persons for symptoms and temperature on arrival floor- support persons who are symptomatic will not be allowed to remain on-site
  • Support persons of suspected or known COVID-19 positive patients will be given additional education on admission
  • We ask that the support person bring necessary clothing and items for their stay with them and make arrangements that allow them to remain in the hospital
  • The support person will not be able return to the unit if they leave, until mom/baby are discharged home (unless visiting a child in the NICU)
  • You will not be able to leave the unit to smoke. If you anticipate this being a concern, we encourage you to reach out for support to quit smoking for this period of time
  • Meal trays will be provided from the cafeteria and delivered to the room for support person.

During COVID-19, visitors in NICU are limited to the following circumstances:

  • NICU patients will be limited to 2 support persons with one person at a time allowed at the bedside
  • Visiting hours  will be limited to 9am-9pm following hospital guidelines
  • Support people will be screened prior to entry to the hospital- support persons who are symptomatic will not be allowed on-site
  • We will be periodically re-screening support persons for symptoms and temperature on arrival floor- support persons who are symptomatic will not be allowed to remain on-site
  • Masks will be provided 
  • The support person will not be able to leave the unit - other than for the meal break- until they are prepared to go home for the day 
  • You will not be able to leave the unit to smoke. If you anticipate this to be a concern, we encourage you to reach out for support to quit smoking for this period of time. 
  • Meal trays/tickets will continue to be provided from the cafeteria. 


During COVID-19, visitors in Pediatrics are limited to the following circumstances:

  • You will be limited to 2 support person for the length of your stay in the hospital. Only 1 at a time may be at bedside.
  • Support people will be screened prior to entry to the hospital- support persons who are symptomatic will not be allowed on-site
  • We will be periodically re-screening support persons for symptoms and temperature on arrival floor- support persons who are symptomatic will not be allowed to remain on-site
  • Support persons of suspected or known COVID positive patients will be given additional education on admission
  • We ask that the primary support person bring necessary clothing and items for their stay with them and make arrangements that allow them to remain in the hospital
  • The support person will not be able return to the unit if they leave until the next day with another full screening
  • You will not be able to leave the unit to smoke. If you anticipate this being a concern, we encourage you to reach out for support to quit smoking for this period of time.
  • Meal trays will be provided from the cafeteria and delivered to the room for support person.

A variety of tools can help you stay in touch with your loved ones when you can’t physically be by their side. See our resource guide at carle.org.

 

Why are you limiting visitors?

We have adopted the same procedure as other hospitals in the region and in the U.S. and following guidance of public health.

 

Why can’t I come in?

We need to limit the spread of illness and protect our patients and staff so we can care for all who need.

 

Why did you let someone else in?

There may be circumstances where a patient is in serious need of a support person due to many limitations. There are rare exceptions because we are working to keep our patients and staff safe.

 

The patient I’m bringing needs a ride.

You are welcome to wait in parking lot or garage so you can be as close as possible.

 

What if I don’t feel well now? 

For those on site, individuals who have upper respiratory symptoms, fever, cough are directed to go to Respiratory Triage Center outside the Emergency Department and Convenient Cares.

Those who call are encouraged to conduct a virtual visit via MyCarle or Health Alliance sites, call patient advisory nurse, send a message to your provider through MyCarle.

 

What is forward triage and how is it used at Carle? 

First, for the safety of patients, staff and the community, Carle Security will provide preliminary screening for patients at patient entrances.

Then, to continue timely care, Carle has triage at our Emergency Department in Urbana, our Convenient Care locations and regional Emergency Departments. This will help us to quickly identify and isolate any potentially infected patients and protect others.

 

What location was the COVID patient seen?

While we anticipate additional cases will be confirmed the initial patient confirmed in Champaign County was seen at the Emergency Department and a clinic. All individuals who were within 6 feet for more than 10 minutes have been contacted. As a community, public health has directed us to assume the COVID virus is in the region and that more will be diagnosed.

 

Where can I go for more information?

Call 902-6100, Carle.org, Carle Facebook, which will be updated daily.

 

How do I access my Health Information records? 

The Health Information Management main office at Carle At the Fields is currently closed to walk in patient access. Medical Information is available and can be distributed to patients via MyCarle portal, EPIC Care Everywhere, fax, secured email, mail or Fed Ex. Patients will be encouraged to use these methods to obtain medical information. Only in emergent situations will medical information and/or images on CD be delivered face to face. Patients must call (217) 902-6100 to arrange an appointment in this situation.

 

Are you offering any special staff training in preparation for spread of the virus that causes COVID-19?

Caring for a COVID-19 patient requires no additional or special training. Care team members do need to wear the appropriate personal protective equipment such as gloves, gowns, eyewear and a mask. Several types of protective barriers are available.


Staff are routinely informed of rapidly changing guidance on properly identifying and isolating any person seeking care in our facilities with the virus that causes COVID-19 symptoms and travel to affected areas. Quick identification and isolation helps safeguard our patients, staff and the community.

 

How can the community help?

There are a few ways the community can help to address COVID-19. Stay home, give blood if possible, make a donation, or consider making masks for non-clinicians

 

 

GENERAL INFORMATION ABOUT COVID-19 

 

What is COVID-19?

It’s a respiratory virus – similar to SARS and MERS – that has sickened thousands in China and has spread to other countries including the U.S. As this is a newly identified strain, we don’t know as much about how easily it spreads or how many people will develop severe symptoms, but Carle is keeping a close eye on best practices and recommendations from health officials like the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO).

 

How do you treat coronaviruses?

Supportive care is best to lessen symptoms. Most people will recover with rest and proper hydration within 7-10 days.

 

Is there a vaccine?

There is currently no vaccine available.

 

Who’s at risk? 

Community transmission is occurring in multiple locations throughout the state. All of us should consider ourselves at risk for exposure to coronavirus. That means that everyone should stay home as much as possible and self-monitor for symptoms. Self-monitoring means checking yourself daily for fever, cough, shortness of breath or a sore throat. Health officials do not indicate testing for mildly ill or asymptomatic people.


What are the symptoms?

Since the symptoms are similar to other respiratory viral illnesses, people exposed to known cases or who recently traveled to affected areas are more at risk if they also have these symptoms:
  • Fever
  • Dry cough
  • Trouble breathing or shortness of breath
 

How is it spread?

Much is unknown about how COVID-19, a new coronavirus, spreads. Current knowledge is largely based on what is known about similar coronaviruses. Most often, person-to-person spread happens among close contacts (about 6 feet). It can occur when an infected person coughs or sneezes, similar to how flu and other respiratory illnesses spread. A person can also contract COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching his or her own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes.

 

How do I protect myself and my loved ones from COVID-19?

Everyday health practices are the most effective prevention:
  • Wash your hands
  • Cover your cough
  • Stay home if you’re sick
  • Don’t touch mouth, nose or eyes
  • Avoid close contact with sick people
 

Should I be wearing a mask in public?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) does not recommend the use of facemasks for the general public. Handmade fabric masks may assist in controlling the spread of germs but do not prevent the wearer from the virus that causes COVID-19.

Additional precautions include:
  • Avoid travel to areas with known cases
  • Avoid contact with sick people
  • Stay home if you’re sick
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces if you’ve been sick

Categories: News

Tags: coronavirus, healthy, infection prevention

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