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Kaleida Health taking extra measures to maintain health, safety


Thu, Mar 26th 2020 08:30 pm

From Kaleida Health:

Kaleida Health is taking extra precautions to ensure the health and protection of its staff, patients and visitors, with the move to “universal masking.”

The new mandate went into effect yesterday at afternoon shift change.

All physicians, nurses, support staff, vendors and visitors are now required to wear a procedural/surgical mask while within six feet of patients or other staff members.

Kaleida Health continues to screen all individuals who enter facilities through designated and limited access points. This includes mandatory temperature screening and, now, mask education and instructions.

“We continue to see and treat the majority of coronavirus cases across the community,” said Jody Lomeo, president and CEO of Kaleida Health. “Our clinical leaders believe that universal masking is the best approach as we deal with this current stage of the pandemic. We are working nonstop to ensure that we protect our caregivers, staff and patients each and every day as we deal with this evolving public health crisis.”

Kaleida Health coronavirus statistics as of 6 p.m. Thursday, March 26:

Buffalo General Medical Center

  • Inpatients: 11 confirmed cases currently in-house (four in ICU, seven in medical unit)
  • 26 in-house that are under investigation
  • 37 additional patients were tested, but are negative

Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital

  • Inpatients: Seven confirmed cases currently in-house (four in ICU, three in medical unit)
  • 18 in-house who are under investigation
  • 10 additional patients were tested, but are negative

DeGraff Memorial Hospital

  • One confirmed case currently in-house
  • 0 in-house that are under investigation
  • 0 additional patients were tested, but are negative

Oishei Children’s Hospital

  • Inpatients: 0 confirmed cases currently in-house
  • Seven in-house that are under investigation
  • Two additional patients were tested, but are negative

In a press release Wednesday, Kaleida said of its testing capacity and plans: “We continue to prioritize testing for our own workforce to ensure that we maintain the health and well-being of our incredibly hardworking and dedicated staff. We have been conducting our own COVID-19 employee testing for the past few days through our Kaleida Health Laboratories.

“Acknowledging that in-house testing is an extraordinarily limited resource at this time, we have limited it to our own workforce and our patients who are deemed critical priorities. A critical priority is one whose clinical status is such that having a test result in 12-24 hours will result in a significant change in the way in which that patient is managed.

“We are and will continue to do all that we can when it comes to things such as testing staff, isolating positive COVID-19 patients (including our own workforce), mask/PPE acquisition, supply utilization and more. Again, our workforce must remain healthy so we can take care of our patients moving forward.”

•UPDATED HOSPITAL SURGE PLAN: The New York State Department of Health has instructed hospitals across the state to update their recently submitted “surge” pandemic plans. The goal is to now increase hospital inpatient bed capacity by 100% to help fight the ongoing coronavirus health crisis. Kaleida Health filed its revised report that could include any or all of the following:

√ Re-opening beds at DeGraff Memorial Hospital in North Tonawanda.

√ Additional intensive care beds at all sites Buffalo General Medical Center, DeGraff Memorial Hospital, Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital, Oishei Children’s Hospital and Olean General Hospital.

√ Doubling up private rooms and conversion of old hospital rooms/space.

√ Utilization of ambulatory surgery space and ambulatory surgery centers.

√ Redeployment of required medical equipment (ventilators, patient beds, etc.).

Kaleida Health’s reminders for the general public:

Kaleida Health’s reminders and additional updates for the public:

•As part of a special coronavirus edition of Kaleida Health’s “Medically Speaking” interviews, Kaleida Health Chief Medical Officer Dr. David Hughes discussed the expansion of Kaleida Health's clinical capacity in light of the current coronavirus pandemic, measures in place to protect the health care workforce, and the critical role of volunteer providers during this time. See video here: https://www.kaleidahealth.org/medically-speaking/.

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