Coronavirus Update: March 23, 2020

Before you read the following update, please know that the situation in our country and our state is looking dire, but our team at Hancock Health has the full support of our community leaders as we continue preparing for the next phase of the pandemic and we will come through the next several weeks wiser, stronger, and better than before!

Covid 19: 32,000 new cases were reported worldwide yesterday, with nearly 10,000 of those in America and 58 in Indiana.  Indiana has had a total of 259 Cases in 37 Counties and 7 Deaths; nearly 2,000 have been tested.  There are now four positive cases in Hancock County and we are awaiting the results of 20 more tests that are pending.

This afternoon, Governor Holcomb issued a “stay-at-home” order, the equivalent of the “shelter-in-place” order many other states have issued in recent days.  If you have not seen the speech by the Governor, I recommend you watch it.

The Governor would not have taken this action if our state officials did not realize the gravity of the situation. It is important to know that our county officials also understand the importance of the “stay-at-home” order.  Earlier today the Hancock County Emergency Management Director (Misty Moore), the County Sherriff (Brad Burkhart), the Greenfield Chief of Police (Jeff Rasche), and I recorded a Facebook Live video to provide a local flavor to the order and I would encourage you to watch as well.

Should your friends and family have questions on the virus, its impact, and the preparations Hancock Health has undertaken, please refer them to our website (http://www.hancockregionalhospital.org/coronavirus/) which has a growing body of resources to help.

Current projections indicate Indiana will hit the surge of COVID-19 positive patients in mid-April so we are taking advantage of this time to continue our preparations:

  • The Hancock Covid Triage hotline (317-325-2683 (COVD) is being staffed 24/7 by an exceptional team
  • The Hancock Covid Triage clinic continues to hone its processes and was again featured on a television newscast. We should all be very, very proud of the way our exceptional Triage Clinic team is representing us!
  • Work to retrofit the Reflections unit to our first COVID care unit is continuing and should be completed in the next several days.
  • We are actively working on additional steps to expand our ability to take care of the potential influx of patients and are examining on-campus and off-campus options – more to come on these plans later this week.
  • We anticipate a reduction in access for visitors to all hospitals by the end of the week and are ironing out the process to provide “virtual visitation” to those who do not have the capability on their phones.  It is a good time for all of us to brush up on our ability to continue our relationships in the virtual environment as we practice “social distancing”, which is actually “physical distancing” since continuing our social relationships is even more important during these difficult times.
  • Conservation of PPE continues to be critical as supplies throughout the country run low.  We are blessed to be finding new avenues to find additional PPE and for a very generous community as well who are finding and bringing in additional supplies.  Should you have folks in the community who would like to donate to the cause, please have them contact Nancy Davis at ndavis@hancockregional.org.
  •  We are developing a temporary transportation team to help our patients make it to their health care appointments since other transportation options are closing for a while.  If you have patients that need transportation assistance, please contact Amanda Everidge at Aeveridge@hancockregional.org.
  • Many thanks to Ty Hunt and the entire Food & Nutrition team for developing the Hancock Health Grocery Store in the cafeteria dining area.  Please keep your eyes open for additional information and take advantage of this incredible resource when it opens!

Please continue to take opportunities to refresh during a period of low census – it is quite likely we will become very busy in the weeks to come so it will be important to head into that time as fresh as we can be.

All the Best,
Steve