As the COVID-19 pandemic continued to evolve, Black River Memorial Hospital (BRMH), was left with no choice but to make tough decisions to best protect the community and their staff. These decisions included halting all elective procedures, restricting visitors, and requiring all those within the facility to wear a mask for source control.
Although some elective procedures have already started to resume, the BRMH Incident Command team approved a four-tier resumption plan this week that outlines plans for scaling back the measures mentioned above.
The resumption plan is based on guidelines and principals put forth by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Jackson County Public Health. The duration of each tier will depend on data collected both at the county level as well as at the BRMH facility. This data will drive the decision process for determining when it is safe to move into the next tier.
BRMH officially moved into the first tier on Thursday, May 28. Most notably, the first tier includes scaling back the visitor policy and allowing one asymptomatic adult visitor per patient between the hours of 7 AM and 11 PM. Special exceptions will continue to be made for laboring mothers and end of life patients.
The remainder of tier-one includes continuing to resume elective procedures to lower-risk individuals and allow individuals within the building to make wearing a source-control mask optional if they can maintain six feet apart from another individual.
“We understand how difficult the past two months have been for our staff, patients, and their loved ones,” stated Melissa Bergerson, Chief Nursing Officer at BRMH. “We will continue to rely on the data as well as guidance from the CDC and Wisconsin DHS to guide our decisions for re-opening. If the data or guidance encourages it, we may need to take a step back and reinstate the stricter measures but we hope to keep moving forward. Our main goal, of course, is to keep our patients, staff, and visitors as safe as possible.”
BRMH continues to screen all patients, visitors, and staff upon entering the facility, thoroughly and regularly cleaning all hard surfaces and requiring the use of a mask when within six feet of another individual.
BRMH would like to further reassure the public that many other added measures continue to be taken at the hospital to best protect the public and the staff during this time. Additionally, although there is always a chance of contracting an illness anytime one leaves the house, receiving care at the hospital when it is needed is not only low-risk but strongly encouraged.
If you have any concerns about COVID-19, or if you have any symptoms, please contact your primary care provider or call the BRMH COVID-19 screening line at 715-284-3906.
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