NMC implementing visitor restrictions, screening to prevent Corona spread

Newton Now Staff
Starting Monday, NMC will be screening all patients and visitors to the hospital for respiratory symptoms (fever, cough, shortness of breath), close contact with confirmed or suspected Covid-19/Corona Virus cases and international travel.

To limit the potential spread of COVID-19, patients with respiratory symptoms and possible exposure to positive COVID-19 patients will immediately be placed in a mask.

Patients and visitors will have to go through the emergency and front door entrance. Visitors under 18 will not be allowed inside unless they are a sibling to an infant in the maternity unit.

Screening will take place at the hospitals clinics in Newton, Hesston, Park City, Valley Center and Wichita as well.

According to a release from the hospital the decision came under the guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Medicare and Medicaid Services, which are recommending enhanced social distancing, increased infection prevention methods and actions to protect the health of those in acute care.

Kansas has had six test positive for Corona Virus, including a Butler County resident. So far one person has died in Kansas. Nationwide confirmed cases rose to 1,875 today, though with communal spread occurring in parts of the country the numbers likely higher.

The hospital release stated that while individuals in the area have been tested for COVID-19, at this time, there are zero confirmed cases in Harvey County.

“Current information shows that most who contract the virus can be treated successfully at home,” Val Gleason, NMC Chief Executive Officer stated in the release. “We recognize that some people with COVID-19 may require hospitalization.”

THe release stated that NMC has been working work closely with the Harvey County Health Department and the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) since February, and continues to do so.

“However, we have taken several steps within our organization to prepare,” the release stated. “This includes launching our emergency response team, known as Incident Command, allowing us to quickly prepare without compromising our current patients and our staff.”

Those who suspect they may have the virus are encouraged to contact KDHE at 1-866-534-3463.

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