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COVID-19 has upended many things in our lives and added concern for coming in for routine healthcare. While COVID-19 is scary and can impact those with underlying health conditions, all healthcare providers are dedicated to ensuring you receive quality, safe care at all times.

“I am very comfortable and confident in saying it is safe for patients to come to appointments at our clinics and hospital,” shared Dr. Nicole Salow, physician with Regional Family Health and Regional Medical Center in Manchester. “We have worked very hard to establish a safe environment and have put several processes in place to decrease potential COVID-19 exposure. We do not want the community to neglect their healthcare out of fear of exposure to COVID-19.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Iowa Department of Public Health considers an “at risk” community exposure when someone is within six feet of a person with infection for longer than 30 minutes without PPE (personal protective equipment). Regional Family Health and Regional Medical Center have put several mitigation procedures in place to decrease the risk of this type of exposure in our facilities.

• Everyone is being asked screening questions and having their temperature taken at our facility entrances.

• Everyone is asked to wear a face covering when coming to an appointment (e.g. mask, scarf, bandanna, etc.).

• Non-respiratory patients are separated from those with respiratory symptoms.

• The clinics and hospital are operating at a reduced capacity so patients are not spending time in waiting rooms.

• Utilizing social distancing measures to ensure people are spaced at least six feet from one another.

• Restricting the number of people within waiting rooms to 10 or less

• Using parking lot and vehicles as waiting areas to ensure social distancing measures are maintained.

• When appropriate, patients are asked to come to appointments alone.

Healthcare providers want to help you prevent disease and illness when possible. Health maintenance exams, well-child checks, and immunizations are very important ways of doing this. If you postponed your child’s visit, or your own, now may be a good time to reschedule your appointment(s).

Telehealth visits done by video or over the phone are an option for some appointments. Patients are encouraged to contact their primary care provider to see if telehealth would be an option for them.

Please do not put off your healthcare, especially out of fear. Rest assured, your safety, health and well-being is a top priority.