Oneida Health activates COVID-19 visitor response plan

Effective immediately, all visitation has been suspended at Oneida Health Hospital and the Oneida Health Rehabilitation and Extended Care facility due to the continued spread of COVID-19. In addition, Oneida Health is also restricting the number of individuals who can accompany patients during outpatient visits throughout their network of services including primary care, specialty care, Quick Care and lab draw services.

“After careful evaluation and continuous communications with the Department of Health, we have designed a visitor response plan as a precautionary measure to prevent the exposure to upper respiratory illness, including COVID-19, to our patients, residents, and staff,” said President and CEO Gene Morreale. “The safety of our patients, residents and staff remains our top priority.”

Oneida Health’s COVID-19 Visitor Response Plan, which can be found online, either restricts visitation completely or in unique cases related to the critically ill, an emergency, a pediatric patient or birth to only one visitor.

“We understand that for many, these new restrictions will be difficult,” said Morreale. “We are asking for everyone’s cooperation and understanding during this time as we continue to learn more about COVID-19.”

Anyone entering the hospital facility will be asked to answer a series of questions as part of a precautionary screening effort.

“Our team has developed a screening tool based on Department of Health guidelines to help identify patients who may be at high risk for COVID-19,” said Morreale. “In identifying those who may be at high risk, we will be able to proactively provide the recommended isolation and social distancing to help keep staff and patients receiving care for other health-related conditions from being exposed.”

Oneida Health has a resource page on its website that provides education and resources related to COVID-19, including the phone number of the Department of Health COVID-19 Hotline: 888.364.3065. They encourage those who use their health system to check their website prior to a patient visit, as it will be updated as more is learned about COVID-19. Oneida Health’s website is oneidahealth.org/covid-19/.

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