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As the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to make news around the world, our leadership remains focused on preparation efforts related to the potential impact of the virus.

Our preparedness efforts to date include ongoing emergency planning, ensuring we have the necessary supplies and equipment to care for our patients, and reinforcing appropriate infection prevention protocols, including:

· Screening for potential coronavirus patients

· Hand hygiene and proper use of personal protective equipment (PPE)

· Proper environmental cleaning

· Isolation procedure to prohibit people who may have a respiratory illness from visiting

· Ongoing communication and coordinate with the health Department and the CDC

At this point, we have had no patient test positive for COVID-19. We are taking every proactive measure in an effort to do what is best for all those we care for every day.

Our Emergency Department has implemented a verbal respiratory screening for all patients entering our emergency department. This is for the protection of our patients, our physician and our colleagues. Masks are being placed on any patient who meets certain screening criteria. Patients who screen positive but do not have severe respiratory symptoms will be treated and released. Patients who screen positive and have severe respiratory illness symptoms will be placed in an isolation room. PPE requirements and infection prevention measures will be taken for any patient suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19.

Lastly, we know that children take their emotional cues from the adult community. We should monitor children's engagement on the topic and help them understand what they are seeing and hearing. These articles might be helpful in talking to students about the coronavirus outbreak:

How to talk to children about difficult news

Explaining the News to Our Kids

How to Talk to Kids About the Coronavirus Outbreak

How to Talk to Kids About Coronavirus

Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas will continue to closely monitor the situation in our own community and across the country. To keep up with the latest news on the outbreak, visit the CDC’s website, 

Other resources: