COVID-19 Concerns Spur Rapid Change at Hospital
[Dodgeville] Local healthcare experts and hospital officials are responding rapidly to provide protections for the community as COVID-19 outbreaks continue in Wisconsin. Upland Hills Health (UHH) is consulting with state and federal health officials, the Center for Disease Control, World Health Organization, UW-Health, SSM Health and partnering with the Iowa County public health, emergency management and public safety agencies to provide important public information and to prepare for a potential surge in the need for hospital and emergent care.
Officials at UHH are making significant changes in services provided in order to conserve supplies and reduce the potential for exposing patients, visitors and staff to the COVID-19 virus. Individuals who have appointments or use services at UHH are encouraged to call their provider to see if the time or location for their appointment has changed.
To reduce community exposure to COVID-19, UHH is taking steps to significantly reduce foot traffic at the hospital campus. The following changes are currently in effect.
• To protect residents in the Nursing and Rehabilitation Center (NRC), a no visitor policy has been implemented.
• Patients in the hospital are limited to one visitor per day. Visitors must be 16 years of age or older.
• Entrance doors on UHH Campus are limited. The public must enter through the Emergency entrance, Main entrance or the East-SSM Health Dean Clinic entrance.
• If a person is ill or in need of urgent care they must call in advance to let medical staff know they are coming in.
• High risk patients are encouraged to postpone non-essential appointments for their own safety.
• Elective surgeries and some elective imaging services have been suspended and will be rescheduled.
• Physical therapy appointments for persons over 65 years old may be moved to an outlying clinic (to be determined) for their safety.
• Consultations will be conducted by phone whenever possible.
• Cardiac Rehabilitation (all phases) has been suspended for their safety.
• Well visits and physicals will be cancelled. The date for rescheduling is unknown at this time.
• Volunteer programs have been suspended.
• The Wellness Center in Dodgeville is closed to non-therapy patients.
• Fitness Walkers are no longer allowed to walk the corridor for exercise.
• Community meetings scheduled to be held at UHH are cancelled.
• Questionnaire screenings are taking place within all UHH facilities and with patients receiving in-home services to identify and protect both patients and staff.
Healthcare service updates, recommendations for protecting yourself from getting sick and protecting others if you are sick are posted on the Upland Hills Health website. Updates are made frequently. The public is encouraged to check the site often. www.uplandhillshealth.org
Upland Hills Health President and CEO, Lisa Schnedler encourages everyone to “be mindful and protect yourself and others. Avoid close contact with people (stay about 6 feet away). Avoid large crowds. Don’t travel to areas with reported cases. Don’t use public transportation. Practice good hand hygiene. Don’t itch or touch your face and be sure to cover your cough or sneeze to keep others safe. If we all work together we can reduce the impact of this virus on our community. As always, stay calm, stay informed and stay positive. Together we will work through this.
The bottom line today is, stay home and isolated as much as you possibly can.”