UPDATED: March 15, 2020, at 12:54 p.m.

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Moore County Hospital District (MCHD) officials announced Friday on Facebook that they are locking down facilities.

Although there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in our area at this time, MCHD is currently in the first phase of mitigation, which is the preparedness phase. The hospital, including physician clinics and all outpatient services, are assessing risk factors and developing plans and procedures in the case of a local outbreak.

The official release from MCHD on Friday stated no visitors would be allowed into MCHD facilities. As of Sunday, March 15th, the MCHD COVID-19 information page outlined several steps being taken to protect patients and staff and provides specific information about visitors at various facilities.

The following information was released on the MCHD COVID-19 Information page.

NURSING HOME

Due to the high mortality rate of COVID-19 for the elderly, visitor access to our Nursing Home is suspended to help protect our residents. We are working with families to provide alternate contact methods with their loved ones, be it by phone, video, etc. until we are confident that our residents are no longer at risk.

HOSPITAL

Due to the necessity of maintaining the health of our staff, and in order to make certain that if the virus enters our facility, we are able to manage and isolate it, the hospital is implementing a lockdown.  Only patients and staff will be allowed into the facility until we are confident that there is no longer a risk.  There will be no visitation allowed except under approved circumstances (the father of a newborn, a parent of a minor, etc.)  Vendors, marketing firms, solicitation, etc. will not be allowed into the facility.

Patients and approved visitors will be screened for disease risk factors.

The main entrance to the hospital (off of 2nd Street) will be locked at 5:00pm.  Hospital access will then be limited to the Emergency Room entrance between the hours of 5pm and 8am.  All other doors, including interior access doors to other units will be secured.

The District will also take other infection control procedures that are above the norm such as limiting meetings of large people to conference phone, performing job interviews by phone or video, suspending volunteer services, suspending salad bar services, etc.

OUTPATIENT SERVICES

Outpatient services such as lab draws and mammograms will be performed between the hours of 8am and 5pm for screening purposes.

PHYSICIAN CLINICS

The Family Health Clinic (Dr. Corbin) and the Internal Medicine Clinic (Drs. Miguel and Collie) will accept sick patients only at this time.  Their patients who need prescription medicine refills will be accommodated over the phone during this time.  Also; patient services that can wait will be postposed until providers can be confident that healthy patients have the lowest risk of infection possible.

Any changes to this information will be relayed to the public on the COVID-19 page and through the MCHD’s Social Media pages.