Wednesday, March 18, 2020

UCHealth Memorial erects coronavirus tents

Posted By on Wed, Mar 18, 2020 at 5:20 PM

click to enlarge This tent is operational at Memorial Hospital Central. The other two are not yet in full operation. - COURTESY UCHEALTH MEMORIAL HOSPITAL
  • Courtesy UCHealth Memorial Hospital
  • This tent is operational at Memorial Hospital Central. The other two are not yet in full operation.
Apparently preparing for an onslaught of COVID-19 cases, the coronavirus disease sweeping the nation, UCHealth Memorial Hospital has erected three tent structures to sequester patients who will be screened and treated, if necessary, for the virus.

The tents are located at UCHealth Memorial Hospital Central, UCHealth Memorial Hospital North and UCHealth’s Fountain freestanding emergency department.

Patients who present to the hospitals with symptoms will be directed to the tents, so they can be kept separate from other patients at the hospitals, says UCHealth Memorial spokesperson Cary Vogrin in an email to the Indy.

She says 40 patients were seen on March 17 at the Memorial Central tent.

"The tents allow the hospital to keep such patients separate from other patients and staff in the emergency department," she says. "In short, it is keeping potentially infectious patients outside of the ED [Emergency Department], which will help limit viral spread."

Vogrin characterized the tents as "yet another proactive action UCHealth is taking to separate patients with respiratory symptoms from patients with other emergent needs, such as a trauma or heart attack."

"Here’s how the tent outside Memorial Central works," she adds. "Patients who self-present to the ED with respiratory symptoms will be directed to the tent, where they will be evaluated by a provider who will determine the next steps for care. The tents are equipped with a registration area, waiting area and four private exam areas with curtains."

The Memorial Central tent is operational. The other two are not as of yet.

The tents serve a separate purpose than the drive-through tent UCHealth also erected a block east of Memorial Park where people are referred by their providers for a swab test.

For more information about the virus, go to this UCHealth link.

In other virus news:

• The city of Woodland Park issued an emergency disaster declaration.

• Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser urged student loan servicers and other creditors to exercise restraint and hold off debt collection efforts.

• The Colorado Department of Transportation has closed both I-25 Pinon Rest Areas. The rest areas, north of Pueblo, are being closed due to a public health and safety concern. I-25 Pinon rest area locations do not have running water that allows the public to wash their hands. There is not an estimated date when the rest areas will open again.

• The Marian House Soup Kitchen is closed to congregant dining in accordance with Governor Jared Polis’ March 16 directive regarding restaurant service in Colorado. A sack lunch is distributed each day from 11 a.m. to noon. If the community would like to donate items for sack lunches, deliver them to the dock from 10 to 11 a.m. Monday through Friday, or order online from businesses such as Amazon and have them delivered. Most other services also have been cancelled by Catholic Charities. Read the news release:

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