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LGH officials implement visitor restrictions in preparation for COVID-19 cases

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Posted at 5:58 PM, Mar 12, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-12 18:58:31-04

Lafayette General Health officials are preparing for the possibility of the local spread of the novel coronavirus with the implementation of a revised visitors policy, effective immediately.

There are currently no cases of COVID-19 at any LGH facility, officials are preparing for the possibility of treating patients with the virus and are restricting visitors at all locations in an effort to keep healthcare workers and patients safe.

The hospital is implementing the following changes:

  • One Visitor Per Patient: While we understand wanting to be close to family and friends while having or recovering from an illness or surgery, to best protect the potential community spread of COVID-19 and to protect those with already compromised immune systems, we will be monitoring all entrances and exits to allow one visitor per patient in all areas of our health system. This includes inpatient and outpatient areas, physician clinics, urgent care locations, etc. The clinical staff will observe visitors for signs of fever and respiratory symptoms (cough or shortness of breath). Visitors that are identified as high risk per this criteria will be asked to go home and will not be able to visit the patient until they are well. For our pediatric patients, two visitors will be allowed at a time. We strongly discourage visitors under the age of 12. We will continue to monitor the situation and modify visitor restrictions as necessary.
  • Using Health Anywhere: If you think you could have been exposed to COVID-19 and are exhibiting mild symptoms, please consider a telemedicine visit by using our virtual urgent care app, Health Anywhere. With Health Anywhere, you can seek care without leaving home and limit your exposure. Our telemedicine providers have been educated about screening and have guidance for clinical protocols. Both the flu and COVID-19 have similar symptoms, are contagious and can be mild or severe depending on the person. We are encouraging the community to use telemedicine as a first line of defense and to quarantine yourself.
  • Dedicated webpage about COVID-19: We have created a page on our website dedicated to COVID-19. Please visit FAQs, prevention and the latest news on the virus from Lafayette General Health.

Officials strongly urge anyone who is experiencing minor symptoms of COVID-19 to isolate themselves for 14 days, avoiding contact with other people and pets. Practice rigorous hygiene, disinfect surfaces regularly, and avoid sharing items.

LGH officials say they are in contact with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Louisiana Department of Health, and the Region IV Office of Public Health.

"While in precaution for potential COVID-19 cases, please remember that healthcare workers within the hospitals of Lafayette General Health are still treating patients who are in distress, experiencing health scares like heart attack and stroke, and so much more. Now, more than ever, our Emergency Departments need to be used for emergencies," the release reads.