LAFOLLETTE, TN (April 29, 2020 – WLAF) – As healthcare organizations continually monitor the impact of COVID-19 on our region, La Follette Medical Center is working to have a phased, responsible restart of procedures and services that have been temporarily closed over the past several weeks. The temporary closure affected non-essential procedures, diagnostics, and outpatient services.
Factors that support reopening these services include: 1) effectively flattening the curve through social distancing, 2) improved COVID-19 testing, 3) aggressive Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) stewardship by healthcare organizations, and 4) a relatively low rate of COVID-19 related hospitalizations and deaths in our area. Reopening non-essential services will allow hospitals to provide care for those needing diagnostic and surgical procedures while continuing safe care for all patients.
- Beginning Monday, April 27, area hospitals resumed some outpatient diagnostic and clinical services (examples: mammography, etc.).
- On Monday, May 4, La Follette Medical Center expects to resume performing non-essential surgeries and procedures in a phased manner.
- The phase-in of services will continue to expand during the next month, with a focus on stringent measures to protect patients, staff and providers from COVID-19.
These specific procedures related to preventing the spread of COVID-19 will continue to be observed:
- All patients will be asked specific health screening questions related to symptoms of and possibility of exposure to COVID-19. Patients may be tested for COVID-19 depending on the patient’s overall health status and clinical guidelines for the procedure or care they are receiving.
- All social distancing guidelines will remain in place.
- Hospital visitation policies will only allow visitors who are determined to be vital to the care of the patient. Other outpatient services may not allow visitors.
- All visitors should wear a face covering at all times and will be screened prior to facility entry.
- La Follette Medical Center will monitor supplies of PPE and adjust procedure schedules if needed to preserve resources in case of a community surge in COVID-19.
- La Follette Medical Center will continually monitor COVID-19 in the community and may limit or stop performing non-essential procedures if a surge or spike in the number of positive cases occurs.
- La Follette Medical Center’s Emergency Department is open and will be providing care under COVID-19 safe guidelines.
Patients who have questions about scheduling specific non-essential procedures or services should contact
their provider’s office directly. (WLAF NEWS PUBLISHED – 04/29/2020-NOON)