To keep people informed on how Glen Cove Hospital is addressing the coronavirus, Mayor Tim Tenke live-streamed a meeting with Kerri Scanlon, the hospital's director, and Dr. Bradley Sherman, its medical director, on Thursday.
The hospital has prepared for an influx of patients for over a month, Scanlon said, adding that the situation with COVID-19 is changing daily. “There is a robust emergency management system at Northwell,” she said. “We are preparing for additional capacity at the hospital.”
There are two closed units at the hospital that can be used, an intensive care unit and an ambulatory surgery unit. “We moved one of our medical surgical units up to a 14-bed ICU,” Scanlon said, “so we can accept patients into private rooms that we had renovated last year.”
What to do if you're feeling sick
“Call your primary-care doctor, but if you don’t have one, go to urgent care,” Sherman said. “Then self-quarantine. It’s best to stay away from family members.”
If symptoms worsen, he added, go to Glen Cove Hospital’s emergency room for evaluation.
The state recently opened a coronavirus testing center at Jones Beach, but Sherman said people can not use it without an appointment. “After calling the hotline, you will be screened and given an appointment,” he said. “If you go without one, you will be turned away.”
The hotline to make an appointment is (888) 364-3065.
Visiting patients at Glen Cove Hospital
The visitation policy at the hospital has changed, Scanlon said. After visiting hours were changed, hospital officials decided that only one person — wearing a mask — could see a patient.
“As of 4 p.m. on Thursday, the New York State Health Department has limited visitation completely,” Scanlon said. “But if there are extenuating circumstances like death or dying, we would make an exception. We realize this is extremely difficult for some families when looking to find out the status of loved ones.”
The hospital recommends that one family member be chosen to share patient updates, Scanlon said.
She added that a handful of patients have tested positive for the virus.
City Hall, Tenke said, is open, but not to the public. Additionally, the city was complying with Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s order to have only 25 percent of the essential workforce on hand. The senior center is closed.
Tenke said there are other ways to be prepared. “The governor recommended having a home preparedness kit,” he said. “You should have a thermometer, decongestants, anti-inflammatory drugs and acetaminophen for fevers.”
Keeping hospital staff safe
Scanlon said that unlike some other medical facilities, Glen Cove Hospital has the needed equipment to protect its staff. “We have the support of a large health system to have personal protection equipment for our staff,” she said. “It’s important to have the right equipment. We’ve been monitoring that use and making sure the staff has it. Other areas have shortages.”
“Glen Cove Hospital is open and ready to care for residents in every way," she said.