Provider Information for coronavirus (COVID-19)

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To our healthcare providers, thank you for being a part of our Health Family.

The information provided on our website is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute providing medical advice or professional services. All information is meant for use by healthcare workers and not the general public. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room immediately. No physician-patient relationship is created by this web site or its use. Neither North Memorial Health nor its employees, nor its affiliated providers, nor any contributor to this web site, makes any representations or warranties, express or implied, with respect to the information provided herein or to its use.

 

Clinical Procedure Resources

Specialty Clinics

COVID-19 Safer Working Environment Guidelines

 

Please review the 5 pillars below:

Masking

When everyone wears a mask, we are reducing the risk for transmission of COVID-19 for our team members and our customers. We do it because we care about our health family.

All team members are required to wear a mask while in North Memorial Health facilities at all times, except in these circumstances:

  • Eating
  • In your personal workspace when no other team members are present within 6 feet

We know that some people with COVID-19 can still spread the virus without showing symptoms (asymptomatic) or before showing symptoms (pre-symptomatic). For this reason, the CDC recommends wearing a mask as a measure to contain the wearer’s respiratory droplets and help protect their team members and members of the general public.

Customer-facing team members will use personal protective equipment (PPE) as outlined in the Universal Masking and Eye Protection guidance.

Non customer-facing team members may use cloth face coverings or single use masks readily available for purchase in many retail outlets. The key is a face covering that fully covers mouth and nose, and doesn’t gap on the sides. While these are not considered personal protective equipment (PPE), they may prevent people, including those who don’t know they have the virus, from spreading it to others but may not protect the wearers from exposure to the virus that causes COVID-19.

Please note: Team members are still expected to wear masks when they are away from their personal work areas. Wearing a face covering does not replace the need to practice social distancing, however it does help reduce the spread of illness especially in settings where social distancing is hard to maintain – like in a healthcare facility where the community is depending on us to provide care.

Reuse guidelines:

It’s important to wear your mask properly and to understand reuse guidelines. For customer facing team members, please see Universal Masking Guidelines.

Customers and visitors are asked to wear masks in our facilities. If they do not bring a mask with them, one will be provided. This is to help reduce spread of infectious respiratory droplets whether the person is symptomatic or asymptomatic. Masks for customers or visitors are distributed in the following ways:

Hospitals: masks are given out at the front entrance during screening and are also available at nurses’ stations within select care units.

Clinics: customers are asked to wear a mask to the clinic. If they do not have one, a mask will be provided.

We will enforce the masking requirement through asking each other to be accountable for our well being. We can share the importance of masking and help our coworkers make the change in a caring and helpful way.

Hygiene

Hand hygiene is one of the most vital practices to prevent the spread of infection. All team members should practice hand hygiene frequently and at key times that include:

  •     Before, during, and after preparing food
  •     Before eating food
  •     Before and after caring for someone at home who is sick with  vomiting or diarrhea
  •     Before and after treating a cut or wound
  •     After using the toilet
  •     After changing diapers or cleaning up a child who has used the toilet
  •     After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing

In addition to the above scenarios, customer-facing team members should continue to practice the five moments of hand hygiene (NMH Hand Hygiene Policy).

Workspaces have been assessed for access to hand hygiene and some areas have added more hand hygiene dispensers. Plus, additional signage is being added to all areas of North Memorial Health to reinforce the importance of hand hygiene.​​​​​​​

Common spaces and public areas

Environmental Services will continue to clean public areas and shared spaces, but we all can participate in keeping our environment clean.

  • High touch surfaces such as elevator buttons, time clocks and door handles will be cleaned at an increased frequency with EPA-registered disinfectants that have claims against coronavirus as well as other pathogens commonly seen in the healthcare environment.
  • Cleaning supplies will be available to support our collective wiping and cleaning of personal work and shared areas.
  • Kitchen/café areas will be cleaned with increased frequency, including hourly wiping down chairs and tables, addressing high traffic areas such as condiment stations, adding sanitizer stations near check out, etc.

Help keep yourself and others healthy by washing your hands frequently and keeping your work area clean!

Screening

All team members will be screened for symptoms of COVID-19 through temperature and symptom monitoring. Currently:

Customers and visitors are being screened for symptoms when they arrive at one of our locations.

Team members are required to self report through an attestation that they are working symptom free.

  • North Memorial Health is requiring all team members to attest that they are free from fever and two or more of COVID-19 symptoms, through personal computer log-ins, Epic messages, and the use of shared computers and time card readers.
  • North Memorial Health will perform temperature screening for all team members starting with a pilot with COVID-19 cohort areas, the North Memorial Health Hospital Emergency Department and Ambulance Services.

Symptom Monitoring

Every team member will complete symptom attestations at the beginning of every shift through their computer, Epic log-in or when they clock in. If you are not symptom free, please notify your leader and leave your work area.

To determine if you are symptom free, ask yourself the questions below.

  • Do I have a measurable fever of 100 degrees F or higher?

Or in the absence of fever, do you I have two or more of the following:

  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Headache
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Body aches
  • Nausea/vomiting or diarrhea

Temperature Monitoring

  • A temperature check pilot program will start with COVID units, ICUs, North Memorial Health Hospital ED and Ambulance Services and then be evaluated for expanding to the broader team.
  • Team members will be screened once they have started their shift/workday.

Social Distancing

Social distancing means keeping space between yourself and others. To practice social or physical distancing stay at least 6 feet (about 2 arms’ length) from other people.

  • Social distancing should be employed wherever possible. COVID-19 is primarily spread through respiratory droplets when you are near someone for an extended period (<6 ft for more than 10 minutes).
  • For non-customer facing team members, keep at least 6 feet between yourself and others, even when wearing your cloth mask.​​​​​​​

We are making it easier for team members to practice social distancing through the following initiatives:

  • Assessing and refining physical spaces to allow social distancing, including flow of traffic, limiting chairs in seating areas, spacing out work areas where possible, etc.
  • Lobbies are being re-evaluated to remove chairs where possible, cover chairs where necessary to encourage social distancing and creating defined spaces for families and individuals.
  • Limiting the number of people in spaces including assessing and redefining the conference room limits for proper spacing, limiting the number of people in elevators, etc.
  • Reinforcing social distancing with signage throughout our facilities.
  • Developing physical barriers where clinically appropriate.
  • In some cases, there is not enough space to social distance. The Physical Work group of the Safer Work Environment team is identifying these areas and working with the specific area to address. To address these situations, North Memorial Health will continue to allow team members to work from home to reduce the number of team members in shared office spaces.

Helping Each Other Stay Safe

We will achieve a safer environment only if everyone employs all pillars all the time.

Let’s each be accountable for creating our safer environment and taking responsibility to help each other stay safe. That means, when you see someone who is potentially making our environment less safe for others, it’s your responsibility to help that person make the necessary changes. Always communicate in a caring and helpful way.

  • Examples:
    • If a few people are getting in the elevator. Wait for the next one to allow proper social distancing.
    • If all the chairs in a conference room are taken, don’t bring in more. Join the meeting via conference call.
    • If someone is not wearing a mask or social distancing in a shared area, explain to them that we wear masks and social distance to keep others safe and offer to help them obtain a mask.

All copyrights to the North Memorial Health website and its contents are the property of North Memorial Health unless otherwise noted. Except when indicated, permission is hereby granted to reproduce, distribute, and display copies of content material for nonprofit educational and nonprofit library purposes, provided that: (i) copies are distributed at or below costs; (ii) author and source are acknowledged; and (iii) a copyright notice is attached to the copies, such notice being in the form “University of Washington 2020” (or as otherwise indicated on the materials as posted here). No commercial uses are allowed without the prior express permission of North Memorial Health.