Friday, March 13, 2020, Donalsonville Georgia – Donalsonville Hospital continues to follow CDC guidelines regarding coronavirus testing and treatment. As of 4:00 pm today we do not have any confirmed cases of COVID-19.
We have implemented patient screening processes, detailed plans for care of COVID-19 patients, held training updates for staff, changed our visitation policy and we will continue to communicate with our employees and in our community.
Limited COVID-19 specimen collection kits are available. Testing must be ordered by a physician and is performed through the Georgia Department of Public Health Lab or a commercial lab. Generally, results are available as soon as 3 days after processing.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) does not recommend COVID-19 testing for ALL patients exhibiting symptoms. The CDC says priorities for testing may include:
• Hospitalized patients who have signs and symptoms compatible with COVID-19 in order to inform decisions related to infection control.
• Other symptomatic individuals who are at higher risk for poor outcomes.
• Any persons who had close contact with a suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patient, or who have a history of travel from affected geographic areas within 14 days of their symptom onset.
According to the CDC, “mildly ill patients should be encouraged to stay home and contact their healthcare provider by phone for guidance about clinical management. Patients who have severe symptoms, such as difficulty breathing, should seek care immediately. Older patients and individuals who have underlying medical conditions or are immunocompromised should contact their physician early in the course of even mild illness.”
Current COVID-19 screening recommendations based on that CDC guidance include:
• Older individuals and those with chronic conditions should be tested as soon as they develop symptoms.
• Younger, generally healthy people should self-isolate and contact a clinician if mild symptoms develop.
• Anyone in respiratory distress or having a true medical emergency should call 911 or go to an ER immediately.
• People with mild or no symptoms should not show up at an ER to request a COVID-19 test.
We thank you for your patience as we continue to make adjustments and changes to all of our policies. As this is a rapidly evolving situation, please visit www.donalsonvillehospital.org for the most immediate updates.