Hospitals provide another update about COVID-19

Updated: April 09, 2020 06:34 PM

Duluth hospital leaders provided another update about COVID-19 response. They, along with other health partners, are providing assistance to Saint Ann's in Duluth, which has an outbreak of cases.

"We are helping Saint Ann's, which is in a daunting fight against COVID. We are supplying critical resources, including staff and PPE, in hopes of stabilizing the situation," shared Dr. Jon Pryor, president of Essentia Health's East Market.

Testing for COVID-19 is picking up at the remote sites, according to Dr. Pryor. "On Tuesday, there were 116 tests at those locations, including 52 alone in Duluth. They've been an important tool to keep potentially infected patients out of clinics and hospitals," he said.

Both hospitals are close to doing testing in-house, but there are limitations about how many they can do.

St. Luke's is offering curbside telehealth visits for people who don't have access to the internet at home.

Dr. Andrew Thompson from St. Luke's said they are learning from current patients or presumptive patients. "We are learning how the new processes work. Where we're going to locate patients, and where the perform certain studies and tests, to keep employees and patients safe during that."

Both facilities are working on buying more ventilators. "We don't have as many as we want," Dr. Pryor shared. They are grateful for the grants from the state and donations from places like maurices.

Another main message: Don't let up on social distancing during Easter. "There will be other celebrations. Let's try and live until that time, until we can celebrate together," Dr. Thompson added.

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