Coronavirus Updates

HVCH Safety Precautions


HVCH has visitor restrictions in place to protect patients and staff against coronavirus. All individuals entering the building must be wearing a face covering and will be screened for virus symptoms.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19 including fever, cough or shortness of breath, please call us first before coming to the hospital at 740-380-8203 and a triage nurse will help determine your next steps.

Coronavirus Updates

What is this virus?

COVID-19 is the infectious disease caused by the most recently discovered coronavirus. This new virus and disease were unknown before the outbreak began in Wuhan, China, in December 2019.

What are the symptoms?

The reported illnesses have ranged from mild symptoms to severe illness and death for confirmed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases. The following symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure.

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath

What should I do if I have these symptoms?

Always Call Ahead: It is important not to arrive at a physician office, urgent care, emergency care, hospital, minute clinic, etc. without first calling.

CALL YOUR DOCTOR IF YOU:

  • Develop symptoms, and have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19, or
  • Have recently traveled from an area with widespread or ongoing community spread of COVID-19.

How can I prevent COVID-19?

There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019. The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. However, as a reminder, CDC always recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases, including:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  •  If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19. Facemasks should be used by people who show symptoms of COVID-19 to help prevent the spread of the disease to others. 

What to Do If You Are Sick With Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)?

Call ahead to a healthcare professional if you develop a fever and symptoms of respiratory illness, such as cough or difficulty breathing, and have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19 or if you live in or have recently traveled to an area with ongoing spread. Tell your healthcare professional about your recent travel or contact. Your healthcare professional will work with your state’s public health department and CDC to determine if you need to be tested for COVID-19.

Updates from Hocking Valley Community Hospital:

UPDATE APRIL 30, 2020 - 

Following the guidance of Governor Mike DeWine, Hocking Valley Community Hospital will safely return to performing medical procedures that do not require an inpatient or overnight hospital stay. This includes regular doctor visits, well-care checks, well-baby visits, outpatient surgeries, imaging procedures and diagnostic tests.

“HVCH has been acting in compliance with Governor DeWine’s order and delayed elective surgeries and procedures since March 19. Now with the new order, it is time for many of those patients to proceed with their needed healthcare services,” HVCH President and CEO Stacey Gabriel said.

Surgeries and procedures that, if not performed, would cause a threat to a patient’s life, a threat of the spread of disease, permanent dysfunction or inability to perform daily activities, and/or the risk a rapidly worsening symptoms have always been permitted even if an overnight stay is required and will continue to be permitted.

In the coming weeks, medical staff will check in with patients to review resuming their procedures, and gradually patients will be rescheduled.

“It’s important for people to continue to get the healthcare they need, even during the COVID-19 pandemic. This is especially true for those who are managing chronic conditions and need follow-up attention,” Gabriel said. “Ensuring the safety of our patients and our staff is our top priority. There are ways to stay safe and protected while seeking needed care.”

HVCH has implemented several measures to protect patients and to mitigate the risk of disease transmission including:

• Limited entrances with temperature/symptom screening
• Visitor restrictions
• Increased frequency of cleaning and disinfection of high-touch surfaces and waiting areas
• Masking of all patients and direct care staff
• Observance of social distancing
• Increased use of telehealth technologies

As an additional precaution, all patients and visitors to HVCH and satellite clinics are required to wear a face covering to their appointment.

“Please don’t let fear of COVID-19 prevent you from seeking necessary medical attention. Not receiving care, especially in urgent or emergency situations, puts people at high risk for complications later. Your local hospital is a safe place to receive care,” Gabriel said.

UPDATE APRIL 3, 2020 - 

HVCH officials urge residents who suspect they may have Coronavirus symptoms to call first before visiting the health facility. As a result, limited resources can be most efficiently used for those in our population who are elderly, have compromised immune systems or serious medical conditions.

Patients who are mildly ill with coronavirus are able to recover and manage their symptoms at home. If you have symptoms including a fever of greater than 100.4°, cough, sore throat and/or shortness of breath we first asked you to self-quarantine at home. If symptoms continue or worsen, please call 740-380-8203 to review your symptoms with a triage nurse, who will determine next steps.

For individuals who are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, it’s essential that your entire family self-quarantine. When your entire family is under self-quarantine, no one should leave the home. This is absolutely critical to avoid spreading this highly contagious virus. Make arrangements with other friends or family members to have someone drop off needed supplies outside to prevent the disease from spreading to others in the community.

As a reminder, for the protection of our patients and staff, HVCH has enacted a “NO visitors” policy across our campus. All individuals are asked to enter through the Emergency Department doors. While all other access points are currently locked, all exits will be accessible. Visitors will have their temperature taken by staff on-hand when entering the Emergency Department. Minors may have one parent or caregiver stay with them during their visit. Adults needing assistance may have one caretaker in attendance. All other visitors wishing to wait for patients are advised to do so in their personal vehicle.

UPDATE MARCH 27, 2020 - 

New process for patients visiting with COVID-19 symptoms: For patients with suspected COVID-19 with mild to moderate symptoms, such as fever, cough, or shortness of breath, the recommended course of action is to stay home and self-quarantine.

If you feel your symptoms are worsening and you need emergency medical treatment, we have implemented additional safeguards to ensure the safety of our patients, caregivers and community. Upon arrival to the hospital, please remain in your vehicle and call 740-380-8203. Your call will be answered by  one of our clinical team members who will collect additional information and provide instructions.

We appreciate the community's partnership and understanding as we work to manage our resources, keep our patients safe, and provide exceptional care to those who need our critical services.

UPDATE MARCH 20, 2020 - 

Your health and safety are our top priority as we continue to respond to the coronavirus outbreak. We have increased cleaning throughout the hospital using disenfectants EPA approved to kill COVID-19. We have rerragned lobbies to accomodate physical distancing guidelines. No visitation restrictions are still in place. Some entrances to the building have been closed and others are manned with staff who are taking temperatures and asking screening questions. All staff are being screened daily as well. Masks will be provided at the door to all patients exhibiting coronavirus symptoms. Testing is currently limited to those who are exhibiting severe symptoms or respiratory distress. Thank you for your patience and understanding during this time; we will get through this together!

UPDATE MARCH 15, 2020 - 

  • Visitor restriction: No visitation is currently in place. We will evaluate on a case by case basis the need to allow family members to come in, such as for end-of-life situations.
    ~The nurse providing patient care will call an indicated family member (with patient permission) to give them a daily update on the patient.
    ~The patient’s room phone number will be provided so the patient can receive calls whenever they like.
    ~If a patient is being admitted from the ED, the visitor can accompany the patient to the inpatient department to assist with answering admission questions and then will be asked to leave.
    ~ Outpatient Appointments - if a patient brings in a visitor with them for an outpatient appointment, the patient and the visitor will be screened for travel and temperature.
    ~ED/Urgent Care - will only limit one visitor with the patient (not interchangeable- only one for the duration).
    ~Behavioral Health Unit - we have increased the number of calls the patient is allowed from 2x10 minutes (per day) to 4x10 minutes (per day).
  • Entrances: During this time of transition, due to constant change of coronavirus guidelines, open entrances could change daily. The Emergency Room entrance will be the only door open after 4 p.m.
  • Screening of Staff: All staff are required to be screened for symptoms and temperature taken which will be recorded daily at the beginning of the shift.
  • Physical Distancing: Please respect the 6 feet of physical distancing guideline when possible. The hospital has rearranged waiting rooms to help with this effort.

UPDATE MARCH 13, 2020 -

Hocking Valley Community Hospital continues to prepare to respond to the needs of the citizens of Hocking County. We follow guidance of the Ohio Department of Health, CDC and The World Health Organization. We also are working very closely with our local Health Department and following their guidance. Our main goal is to minimize the exposure of those in our community. If we find ourselves in the situation of having positive cases, we want to contain the possibility of spreading the virus.

The single most important thing you can do if you are sick - STAY HOME. Rest, hydration and treatment of symptoms (fever, cough, etc.) is the best treatment you can do. There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet) and through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.

Please see the above guidance on how to protect yourself and others.

UPDATE MARCH 11, 2020 -

As you know, the Corona Virus is present in Ohio. Because of the desire to slow and eventually stop the spread of the virus, Governor DeWine has instituted several executive orders. One of those is in relation to limiting visitors. We certainly understand the importance a patient’s friends or family have in the healing process; however, we also have an obligation to protect the safety and well-being of our staff and patients. 

Hocking Valley Community Hospital has put the following restrictions in place effective immediately:

  • Visiting Hours - HVCH visiting hours will be from 8:00am-6:00pm. All entrances other than the ED/UC entrance will be locked after 6:00pm.
  • Visitor Limitation - At this time, we can only allow ONE VISITOR PER PATIENT PER DAY for patients in BHU, SCU, Med-Surg and Swing Bed. This is per the Executive Order of Governor DeWine.
  • Logging of Visitors - Visitors will be required to check in at the nurse’s station upon arrival to the department. The Executive Order mandates that we log the visitor’s temperature and check for signs/symptoms of illness prior to going into the patient’s room.

We understand the disappointment this will cause in family and friends not being able to visit with loved ones; however the hope is that these efforts will slow and quickly stop any further spread of the virus. The sooner the spread of the virus stops, the sooner the community can return to normal activities.

As a reminder, please do your part in stopping the spread of any virus by washing your hands and staying home when you are ill. Social distancing is imperative for our community to do what we can to prevent the Corona Virus from impacting our community.

ODH also suggests that IF you are experiencing symptoms such as fever (greater than 100.4), cough, body aches, and shortness of breath, you should CALL your provider BEFORE you show up for an appointment.

Hocking Valley Community Hospital continues to participate in planning calls with COTS, ODH, EMA, and OHA. This virus continues to evolve, and as new things are learned, the guidance changes.We’d like to provide you with a resource where you can access the most up-to-date information.

ODH has created a website specific to Coronavirus.That website is: http://coronavirus.ohio.gov/.

They also have established a 24-hour hotline should you have any questions pertaining to the virus: 1-833-427-5634

We are working to add information to our website and will continue to provide updates here as well.

RESOURCES:

740-380-8000