ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (CBS4) – HealthONE’s Swedish Medical started new screening protocols for staff and visitors to the hospital this weekend. The same screening protocols will go into effect at all HeathONE medical facilities this week.

(credit: CBS)

“Our plan involves every aspect of the hospital,” said Dr. Nick Tsipis, the Associate Medical Director of the Emergency Department at Swedish Medical Center.

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“If they are a family member or a visitor of a patient here in this hospital, they are ushered down this hallway, and they come to a screening checkpoint before they enter into the hospital.”

Visitors are asked if they have any symptoms of a respiratory virus or if they have traveled to any destinations which have seen high rates of infection from COVID-19.

“We’re trying to limit the number of folks from the community who would be coming in and could potentially be putting them at risk,” he said.

(credit: CBS)

Potential patients should do their own screening before coming to the hospital.

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“If you are having a mild cold or upper respiratory infection, something that you wouldn’t seek medical care for normally, we actually ask that you stay home,” said Tsipis.

As these screenings get rolled out to all HealthONE Medical facilities this week, Tsipis stressed this move is one of vigilance and not out of fear.

(credit: CBS)

“It’s important to make sure that the information that you are getting is from reliable sources, and to make sure that we are prepared and have a measured response, but there is not a need to panic,” he said.

Additional Information from the CDPHE:

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  • Practice good hygiene. Thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water. In the absence of soap and water, use hand-sanitizer; use your elbow or sleeve to cover coughs and sneezes
  • Stay home if you’re sick; keep your children home if they are sick. The illness can last for many days so  make preparations now to work from home if possible.
  • We advise Coloradans to always be prepared for an emergency– like a large snowstorm– and have a plan for your family.  Make sure to have 72 hours of key supplies on hand like medications, infant formula, diapers, pet food, etc. FEMA guidance for pre-pandemic COVID-19 preparedness is available on Ready.gov.
  • Stay informed with reliable, up-to-date information. People who have general questions about coronavirus disease 2019, can call CO HELP at 303-389-1687 or 1-877-462-2911 or email  COHELP@RMPDC.org, for answers in English and Spanish (Español), Mandarin (普通话), and more.

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