Passavant Area Hospital’s emergency department has a change in procedure and look recently to screen for the possibility of COVID-19. Dr. Charles Reeve, Head of Passavant’s ER Department, details some of the notable changes that took place on Monday. “We have a tent out front, which is our initial screening area that people have probably noticed. This is where we ask specific screening questions related to respiratory symptoms or COVID-19. We converted our ambulance garage where we kept the truck. We built some specific areas out there for respiratory patients which will be staffed with members who will be wearing proper PPE to further screen these patients so we can see them outside as a provider and possibly discharge them from that area, or if they are deemed too ill, we can still move them inside to the ER.”
Reeve says that all patients will go through the tent for a pre-screening. He says that patients with no respiratory symptoms will head toward a regular ER visit, while those with respiratory issues will head to the back of the building to the renovated ambulance garage for further triage.
Reeve says he’s worried that people are avoiding ER. “I’m worried that certain people are avoiding the Emergency Department that do need care just because we are having this unfortunate pandemic. It doesn’t mean that people aren’t still having heart attacks or other medical issues. If you feel you’re having a medical emergency, please don’t avoid the Emergency Department. We’re prepared and ready to take care of you.”
Reeve says that he’s confident that the ER is taking proper precautions and can help anyone who comes through the department. He says that the ER Department has seen about a 40% reduction in visitors to the department. Reeve says that even though there is a current pandemic that the ER Department still wants residents who need urgent medical care to come to the hospital immediately.