Edith Nourse Rogers Memorial Veterans Hospital
Bedford VA COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Operation Update
Starting Tuesday, March 10, at 6 a.m., the Edith Nourse Rogers Memorial Veterans Hospital (Bedford VAMC) will implement a 100 percent screening process for COVID19 symptoms for all staff, patients and visitors of the Bedford Healthcare System, including its Community Based Outpatient Clinics.
“I am committed to doing everything I can to protect your health and well-being,” said Bedford Medical Director Joan Clifford. “I will ensure you remain informed as developments arise related to our response to the spread of COVID-19 within our communities.”
Veterans with flu-like symptoms such as fever, cough and shortness of breath, should call before visiting a VA facility. In addition to calling first, consider using virtual care options such as telehealth or My HealtheVet Secure Messaging. Visitors who do not feel well should postpone their visit.
Screening will take place upon entry to each CBOC and before boarding any VA shuttles. On the Bedford campus, be prepared for delays as entry into buildings 2 and 78 will be restricted to the ambulance bay and the red steps. All personnel will be asked three screening questions:
- Do you have a fever?
- Do you have a new or worsening cough or shortness of breath?
- Do you have flu-like symptoms?
Patients who respond “yes” will be sent to Urgent Care. Employees who respond “yes” will report to Occupational Health. Visitors will be asked to depart the facility and check in with their personal physician.
“For now, our planning and emergency management teams are working daily in close coordination with Veterans Health Administration teams and the community to prepare appropriately,” Clifford said.
BHS recommends the following steps you can do to keep yourself and others safe:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. An easy way to mark the time is to hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice while scrubbing
- Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick
- Stay home when you are sick or becoming sick
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue (not your hands) and throw the tissue in the trash
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces
- Getting a flu shot is HIGHLY recommended! Flu and COVID-19 have similar symptoms; getting vaccinated will help reduce false alarms
Get the latest information on COVID-19 on the VA Public Health website here.