COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Updates
We Are Here For You
It has been said many times that we are in uncharted waters. Frankly, it is daunting and somewhat scary for many. So I wanted to write a little bit to everyone in our community about this evolving situation with COVID-19 and our response. As a foundational partner to caring for this community along with other private healthcare entities, the department of health, schools and other agencies local and distant, it is imperative to be united and to communicate. With so many closures of businesses and gatherings this becomes more difficult. Thus my writing to you which is published in the newspaper, on EARH’s website and Facebook pages for all to read. I also hope the community will share with family, friends and neighbors. As we move forward on this journey please know that even if our communication isn’t as frequent as we might like, or seems imperfect at times, we will strive to offer the best information we have available. This is important because the speed of changing data and recommendations is fast, often daily.
First, know that we are here every day to care for you.
Second, it is extremely important that our community know that we are taking steps to protect each of you. We will be implementing a number of items to protect each of you by ensuring EARH has the staff and facilities available to provide the absolute best care. At times this may mean drive-thru clinics, visitor restrictions, cancellation of non-life threatening services, implementation of telehealth and others. We know that this will be strange and uncomfortable, but necessary to ensure we are here to take care of you.
Third, there are a lot of unknowns. Many have asked: “why are we doing all of this”, “why shut down business?”, “why limit gatherings if in the end we can’t stop it?”. These are all valid questions to which there are some reasonable answers. To start, I want to reiterate that it is true that we cannot stop the virus. The ultimate reason for these measures is to minimize the spread, thus minimizing the number of people getting sick and ultimately minimizing the number of people that die. I think there are many that believe they won’t get very sick so why restrict them. When the reality is that a great many more people appear to be carriers of this particular virus, with few or no significant symptoms. This means you feel pretty good, but unknowingly spread the virus to everyone around you while you continue to go about your day-to-day business.
Fourth, what is this “Social Distancing” & What does “flatten the curve mean”? Social distancing is simply minimizing the exposure risk by creating enough distance from others so you do not come in contact with the virus. Flattening the Curve refers to all of these efforts slowing down the infection rate over a long period of time so the healthcare system isn’t overwhelmed. The reality is this: We have a finite number of hospital beds, equipment, supplies, and staff designed for the average day to day healthcare of our community. If we have a major influx of COVID-19 patients, we will not be able to care for everyone as well as we would like. If we have this influx, our closest responding healthcare organization are likely to be overwhelmed as well so there will be nowhere to send the sick. If it is spread over time, we will be much better prepared to provide the care to you and your loved ones that they need.
Fourth, what can you do?
Start by minimizing gatherings and practice “social distancing” – Please remember that it may not be about you, it’s about infecting our most vulnerable population (the elderly and the immunocompromised) who are at the greatest risk. Think about short term options like FaceTime or skype which can be great tools to “visit”.
Wash your hands - Soap and water is the BEST. By scrubbing your hands with soap and water you break down the molecules of the virus thereby killing it. Soap is superior, but the scrubbing part is essential.
Follow legitimate resources. There is a lot of information out there and quite a bit of it is simply not accurate. It is also important to recognize that we are still learning about this virus so new information or changing information will occur. Following are a few sources to monitor for up-to-date information:
Help your neighbors - Please offer to help your friends who work in essential services. The police, fire, EMS, healthcare workers also have family that need support. Offer to share some of your groceries for the over 60 population or those who need a little extra support. This is a great time to do good and feel good about it!
I know you may be scared. If we confront this together the fear can be diminished. Our community will be stronger because of our efforts. Lastly, I am so proud of our health care workers and everyone coming together to support them.
Thank you for your continued support of East Adams Rural Healthcare.
Corey Fedie, CEO
Due to the outbreak of COVID-19 (Coronavirus), we must take extra steps to protect our patients, staff, visitors and the community. Effective immediately, we are restricting visitations within East Adams Rural Healthcare.
The decision to limit visitors was difficult and made only after careful consideration as we witness schools, houses of worship and other venues cancel gatherings to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
We recognize that there are times when having a visitor or family member present is crucial. In these cases, visitors will be allowed based on the exceptions listed below. Please note in all cases a visitor will only be allowed if they do not have symptoms of respiratory infection (fever, runny nose, cough, shortness of breath). Additionally, children under the age of 18 will not be allowed except under extraordinary circumstances. Exceptions include:
Pediatric patients may have 2 support visitors in the room for the duration of the visit.
Patients who are at the end-of-life may have 2 immediate family members at a time.
Patients who have an appointment at a Ritzville Medical Clinic, laboratory, Physical Therapy, Washtunca clinic or radiology, as well as those visiting the Emergency Department, may have 1 person with them if needed.
Visitors allowed must stay in the patient's room the entire time of the visit. Once the visitor leaves the patient room, they must leave the medical center.
Please note that visitors will not be allowed for patients with a pending or positive COVID-19 test.
We appreciate your understanding during these uncertain times. Our goal is to continue to provide the best possible care to our community
Due to the outbreak of COVID-19 (Coronavirus), we must take extra steps to protect our patients, staff, visitors and the community. Effective immediately, we are restricting all public access to the business office and medical records departments.
Persons who physically come into the facility seeking help from either of these departments will be allowed to leave a message with Registration that will be sent to the appropriate business office or medical records staff member, and answered before the end of the day if received by 4:00 pm, and by the end of the next business day otherwise.
Medical records request can be submitted either through our website or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org and medical records will be mailed to patients.
Business Office Hours are Monday through Friday 8 am to 5 pm
Medical Records Hours are Monday through Thursday 8 am to 5 pm
We appreciate your understanding during these uncertain times. Our goal is to continue to provide the best possible care for our community.