DILLON – Barrett Hospital & HealthCare on Monday announced plans to open more clinic visits, diagnostic imaging services, laboratory testing, along with physical, occupational and speech therapy, and several elective procedures. For safety, a mandatory mask policy for patients and staff on both campuses already exists, which requires masks to be worn in hospitals and clinics.
Elective procedures are operations and other procedures that are planned and performed in a hospital operating room. Patients who are scheduled for elective procedures who may require intubation procedures or produce aerosols are tested for COVID-19 a few days before their procedure. COVID-19 test samples from elective procedure patients are sent for laboratory analysis and take about three to four working days for results. Patients need to quarantine themselves during the time period between the test sample collected and the scheduled procedure date.
The Montana Hospital Association now recommends resuming elective procedures, after calling for them to be canceled by the end of March due to growing concerns over a potential surge in COVID-19 cases. “We are pleased that the policy of staying at home has succeeded in reducing the impact of COVID-19 locally,” said Ken Westman, CEO at Barrett Hospital & HealthCare. “A pause in the unnecessary procedure is a strategy to ‘save critical resources’ for the COVID-19 outbreak. We understand that it has been a challenge for patients to delay elective procedures and we work carefully to ensure that safety measures are available that will give patients, their families, our staff and others peace of mind and assurance that they can safely get treatment. they need it. “Barrett Hospital & HealthCare said that in time it will slowly improve additional services, however, is ready to reduce elective services and procedures if needed.