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  • An update from Essentia Health and Sanford Health

  • An update from Essentia Health and Sanford Health

    An update from Essentia Health and Sanford Health

    Essentia Health

    Essentia Health’s mission is to make a healthy difference in people’s lives. We are here day in and day out to care for our communities. While addressing a pandemic such as COVID-19 is a challenging experience, Essentia Health’s expert staff are trained to deal with infectious disease at any time. We are working to ensure we have plans and procedures in place to safely care for an influx of COVID-19 patients should that occur. We continue to reinforce with our staff the importance of proven infection prevention procedures such as practicing proper hand hygiene and staying home when feeling sick.
    In these unprecedented times, we are pleased to offer alternative ways to care for our patients. E-Visits, Virtual Visits and Telemedicine are a few of the ways we are caring for our patients in addition to in-person visits when they are needed. Our Emergency Department is available 24/7 to care for issues that can’t wait. If you need care from your primary care physician for a non-COVID-19 concern, please call your doctor’s office to schedule a Virtual Visit. We encourage everyone to practice hand hygiene, social distancing and staying home when you are sick.
    Testing criteria has changed as the situation has evolved. Essentia Health is following the North Dakota Department of Health and the CDC’s guidance on who should be tested. You can see the most current testing recommendations on the North Dakota Department of Health website (health.nd.gov).
    If you have any questions about COVID-19 we invite you to call our hotline at 833-494-0836. If you have respiratory symptoms and think you might have COVID-19, please start an E-Visit at EssentiaHealth.org.

    Sanford Health

    At Sanford Health, we understand that this is a difficult time, and the families of our patients are concerned about the impact COVID-19 could have on their loved ones. The patients who enter our doors become family, and we are committed to ensuring that they are cared for in a healthy and safe environment.
    There is no greater priority than the health and safety of our patients, team members and the communities we serve.
    We are continually evaluating the readiness of our facilities, teams and supplies and working around-the-clock to prepare for increasing demands for care. We are working closely with local, state and federal officials to evaluate the COVID-19 situation in our community, and we are actively monitoring and following infection control protocols from the CDC. Sanford has been preparing to treat patients with COVID-19 since the first international cases were reported. Our proactive approach has us working in concert with other health organizations and experts from the local, state and national level.
    Sanford Health is currently treating patients for COVID-19. We are taking the necessary precautions to protect our staff and patients and following treatment guidelines.
    Patients who may be positive for COVID-19 should call ahead to their Sanford provider for specific instructions on how to minimize the risk of spreading the illness to others. Sanford Health also offers consultation from home through e-visits and video visits.
    Sanford has launched its own internal FDA-compliant testing for COVID-19. We also have the ability to test through the state Departments of Health and private labs. Sanford’s testing capability will enable far more patients to be tested with faster turnaround time.
    Sanford is offering E-visits for COVID-19 care in Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota.
    ·         An E-visit is a convenient online questionnaire that you can do from home to share your symptoms.
    ·         A Sanford provider will review and get back to you within four hours with a treatment plan or
    ·         prescription, or instruction to be seen in-person for further evaluation or testing.
    ·         We are encouraging our providers to use this option for all patients when medically appropriate.
    Clinics (Fargo metro)
    ·         Sanford family medicine, internal medicine, and children’s clinics are seeing patients by appointment only.
    ·         Same day appointments may be available.
    ·         Sanford Urgent Care services are offered at Sanford’s Broadway, South University and SW Children’s Clinics. 
    ·         Patients can schedule an appointment through My Sanford Chart or by calling:
    o   Sanford Family Medicine: 701-234-8830
    o   Sanford Children’s: 701-234-3620
    o   Sanford Internal Medicine: 701-234-8820
    ·         You do not have to be a current Sanford patient to schedule an appointment.

    Visitor Restrictions
    Sanford Health has updated its visitor policy to protect the health and safety of its patients and staff in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Visitors will no longer be allowed in Sanford Health hospitals, with the following exceptions:
    o For births, NICU, pediatrics: One pre-determined visitor allowed daily
    o End of life: determined on a case-by-case basis
    o End of life COVID-19 patient: One pre-determined visitor allowed daily. Visitor must follow protective measures including masking and self-quarantine for 14 days following visit.
    For Sanford clinic visits and outpatient appointments, patients should not bring a guest unless the patient is a minor or the patient is an adult in need of assistance.

    For more information, visit Sanford Health News and sanfordhealth.org.

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