SCHUYLER COUNTY, N.Y. (WETM) – Officials from Schuyler Hospital, Cayuga Health and Schuyler County held a press conference today to provide a COVID-19 update.
Speakers included Tim O’Hearn, Schuyler County Administrator, Deborah Minor, Director, Schuyler County Public Health, William Yessman, Schuyler County Sheriff, Dr. Martin Stallone, President and CEO, Cayuga Health System and Rebecca Gould, President and CEO, Schuyler Hospital.
Tim O’Hearn discussed how all county, state and federal agencies are working closely together to put preventive and responsive measures in place to minimize the effects of COVID-19 and limit the spread of the disease. “We have been following the guidance of the Schuyler County Public Health, the CDC, and the New York State Department of Health,” states O’Hearn. “The health and well-being of our community is our top priority. Last week we declared a State of Emergency for Schuyler County in response to COVID-19 to protect the health and welfare of our residence, and we expect everyone to take this seriously and approach every day with the utmost caution.”
“Although there are no confirmed cases within Schuyler County to date, this situation is rapidly evolving, and the threat is imminent”, Martin Stallone emphasized. “Our entire heath organization is and has been preparing for a surge in patient volume, to the best of our ability, based on the information that we are receiving.”
“Senior citizens, those with immune-compromised situations, or underlying health conditions should be mindful of where they are going in the community because as you have already heard, they are the most vulnerable,” added Stallone.
Rebecca Gould also confirmed that there have been no confirmed COVID-19 cases at Schuyler Hospital. She asked anyone who believes they may have symptoms of COVID-19 (coronavirus) and meets risk factors to call their primary care provider for advice on actions to take.
“We have established a COVID-19 hotline at our Montour Falls Primary Care Center,” Gould confirmed. “The Hotline phone number (607) 535-7154.”
In order to keep their patients, residents, visitors and employees safe, the following measures have been implemented at Schuyler Hospital:
- Limited entrances to our facilities (Emergency Department, Rehab and Seneca View main entrance)
o At those entrances, everyone who enters is being screened for symptoms and risk factors for COVID-19 (coronavirus)
o The screening is a brief questionnaire
o All staff are also having temperature checked, to protect our Seneca View residents – the most vulnerable population
o All Seneca View staff are wearing masks, as required by NYS Department of Health
o No visitors being allowed at Seneca View, except in limited cases, as defined by the NYS Department of Health
o Visitors at Schuyler Hospital proper are being limited to one at a time and that includes, inpatients, Emergency Department, as well as any other ancillary services.
o No visitors under age 18
o All non-essential meetings and events have been cancelled until further notice
“We are also working with all departments to put processes and procedures in place for the steps we would take if we receive a patient who tests positive for COVID-19 (coronavirus). And, of course, we are in continual communication with our community agencies.”