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Lexington Regional Health Center COVID protocols

As of Saturday, Apr. 11, there are six confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Dawson County. (Credit: Patrick Johnstone/KNOP-TV)
As of Saturday, Apr. 11, there are six confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Dawson County. (Credit: Patrick Johnstone/KNOP-TV)(KNOP)
Published: Apr. 12, 2020 at 10:31 AM CDT
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Lexington Regional Health Center has implemented special procedures for testing patients who are suspected of having COVID-19.

"if we have a patient that calls in and meets the criteria for COVID-19 testing per the CDC's recommendations, we have them come from a set time every day ," said Nicole Thorell, the Chief Nursing Officer at the hospital.

The hospital has a decontamination room they use for testing. Patients must call the COID-19 hotline, 308-746-4670, and a staff member will give further directions. Patients park in a separate parking spot, only have access to the hospital from one entrance, that enters directly into the room, a staff member in full personal protective equipment administers the test, and the room is washed down after each patient.

"It's perfect for situations like these, it can be completely sprayed down and cleaned with appropriate cleaning, and it also has the negative air flow that goes out into a HEPA filter," Thorell said about the room.

The hospital has been in touch with bigger hospitals in the area about relieving pressure by treating their patients if necessary, and the hospital has a plan should they have to treat COVID-19 patients.

"We do have a contingency plan set up, or a "surge plan" that we've been calling it, for COVID positive patients. We have four rooms that we can convert to negative pressure to keep those patients in, and we have four vents, and we've ordered more. We've been working with a huge team that's very knowledgeable and has lots of experience, and our staff are highly trained and been receiving more training to be able to care for COVID-19 patients," Thorell said.

The hospital is also protecting its everyday patients by setting up patients with contagious illnesses, even if it's just the flu, at a different part of the hospital.

"We've set up a separate clinic in a completely separate building for all of our sick or acute care patients. So, anybody that has symptoms that could be contagious, even if it is the normal GI flu, they're being seen in a completely separate area of the hospital than our well patients. So, we're still able to provide those OB services, and well-child checks, and chronic care visits that are important for our population while keeping them safe and not exposed to contagious diseases," Thorell said.

The hospital is only doing scheduled appointments, and no walk-in visits. The hospital will also be providing updates to its Facebook page and

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