June 22, 2020: COVID operational update - VA Bedford Healthcare System
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VA Bedford Healthcare System


June 22, 2020: COVID operational update

Graphic of a virus

Bedford VA Medical Center continues implementation and planning for expansion of services as the state of Massachusetts reopens. In this update: safe practices for face to face visits and updates for Urgent Care.

By Kat Bailey, Bedford VA Medical Center Public Affairs
Monday, June 22, 2020

BEDFORD, Mass. – Bedford VA Medical Center’s Expansion of Services Task Force continues meetings with each department within the center. The task force will examine expansion of care initiatives to provide medically appropriate care that reduces risk of COVID-19 transmission to Veterans and staff. 

Before any clinical care is delivered, safe infrastructure and support must be in place. 

“As we examine the future of care provided to Veterans by Bedford VAMC, know that we will adhere to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and relevant federal, state and local public health guidance and recommendations,” said Bedford VAMC Chief of Staff Dr. Shilpa Rungta. “The safety of our Veterans and staff members is paramount and part of the culture of the Veterans Health Administration.”    

Veterans are encouraged to visit the operating status page of Bedford VA Medical Center’s public website for the latest information about the expansion of services. The website will have clinic reopening dates and details and will be updated as needed. Visit https://www.bedford.va.gov/emergency/index.asp or start on the home page, click Operating Status from the left bar menu, then Current Operating Status. 

Bedford VAMC’s social media accounts provide updated information as well. Like and follow us at https://www.facebook.com/BedfordVAHospital/ and https://twitter.com/bedfordvamc

As Bedford VAMC begins to expand services, Veterans are reminded to continue taking advantage of telephone, secure messaging via MyHealtheVet, and VA Video Connect (VVC) services to conduct health care appointments. 

If you have a face-to-face visit with your provider, we ask you to wait outside the facility until your designated appointment time as the safety of Veterans and staff is, and must be, the highest priority. In-person appointments can be made by calling the Bedford VAMC Patient Care line at 800-VET-MED1 (800-838-6331). 

The hospital’s urgent care clinic is open weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Walk-ins are welcome, but in order to limit exposure to COVID-19, Veterans should call the Patient Care line before coming to Urgent Care. This allows our physicians to complete a telephone or VVC evaluation and determine if the Veteran needs to be seen at the clinic in person. 

Bedford VAMC is still conducting 100 percent screening for COVID-19 symptoms for all patients, staff and authorized visitors. Save time at facility entrances using the digital pre-entry screening app by texting screen to 53079. Large text and buttons, plain language, and a simple flow of questions allow users to complete screening in under a minute, then share the results with a member of the facility screening team. 

Real-time, map-based data on COVID-19 case counts is available on VA’s Access to Care Website. For more information about the Coronavirus, visit https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.


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