May 20, 2020
Montgomery Gastroenterology and Montgomery Endoscopy Center (MEC) are taking precautions to protect staff/patients from COVID-19 (coronavirus disease). Use of PPE (personal protective equipment) as well as universal precautions should always be practiced, but during this time it is crucial that additional measures are taken.
1. We have moved almost completely to telehealth appointments for the main office (Montgomery Gastroenterology), but periodically patients come in for urgent in-person evaluation or to pick up forms/prescriptions. We have greatly decreased and spaced out the chairs in waiting room to allow for 6 feet of social distancing.
2. The front door and check-in area of the main office (clipboard, pens, counter, patient chairs), and patient bathroom will be wiped down with germicidal wipes every 90 minutes during the hours which patients are received for procedures (this is typically between 0730-1330 on procedure days). A timer will be kept at the front desk to facilitate adherence to this measure.
3. Patients are screened via phone using a Covid-19 symptom and history questionnaire 24 hours before procedure. Any positive symptoms or history are presented to the patients physician for review and action as indicated. Also when patients and non-patients (i.e patients ride for procedure) arrive for any in-person appointment or procedure, an additional Covid-I9 questionnaire is to be completed. All patients and non-patients entering the office have their temperature taken by front desk staff; any temperature above 99.5F is noted immediately to the patients physician.
4. Patients are asked to come to the office alone to check in and if possible to wait in their cars until our staff is ready to escort them to their procedure room at MEC. Rides are to wait in their cars/or go home until our staff calls them to return for patient pick-up, which will be done at curbside. If a ride must accompany patient, they must adhere to the same flrotocol (i.e. Covid-19 questionnaire and temperature taken).
5. Staff members will wear street clothes to the endoscopy center (until further notice) on procedure days and change to scrubs before procedures and then dut of those scrubs after procedures. This is to avoid contamination from outside sources as well to contain potential pathogens in the MEC.
6. Prior to start of procedures, endoscopy staff will confirm before or at the time of procedure "time-out" that they have the necessary supplies In the room ,o complete the procedure i.e. forceps, fluids, PPE and that they have handled any personal matters (i.e. bathroom break, responding to urgent patient care-related messages). This will minimize greatly and need for staff to leave the procedure room after a procedure has started.
7. Once PPE is donned (mask/goggles, gown and gloves, staff is NOT to touch anything that does not pertain to procedure that is taking place i.e. radio, phones, trashcans. Staff may not leave or enter the procedure room while patient is undergoing procedure, except in the event of a medical emergency in order to reduce the risk of transferring microorganisms.
8. Between patients and at end of day all high traffic equipment (defined below) must be wiped down with McKesson Disinfecting Wipes (or equivalent) and adhere to manufacture contact time (2 min).
- Table top (to include the front of machine) and all attachments i.e. pig tail connector
- Any equipment that comes in contact with patient i.e. blood pressure cuff, EKG leads, IV pole
- Door knobs (to include closet handle and cabinets), light switches, patient beds (to include railings and controller)
- Computer station (including keyboard, mouse)
- Anesthesia Cart
9. Bathrooms in MEC will be wiped down with germicidal wipes every 90 minutes to include doorknobs, commode and faucet. This also will include the door knobs of the front door of MEC. A timer will be kept at the front office in MEC as well as a log to ensure compliance. The nurse manager will review the log twice a week and give feedback to staff as needed.