As we enter the third month of Washington State’s restrictions to limit the spread of the coronavirus, our patience and economy are being stretched very thin.

As important as these precautions of staying at home, social distancing and wearing masks in public are, please continue to care for your health and personal well-being.

If anyone feels a need to see or speak with a health-care provider, please contact your clinic. There are many ways for our clinics to help you, and you may not need to leave your home, or your car. Our telemedicine program continues to grow substantially as more patients find themselves comfortable with using this simple technology. 

In addition, those needing regular appointments or screenings can get their vitals and some blood tests taken while in their car.

As we gradually bring back our entire range of services, we continue to take extra precautions to ensure Island Hospital is clean and safe. We have fewer open entrances, screen everyone who enters, require masks of everyone in our buildings and are going over and above our typical high standards of cleaning facilities.

As we bring our services back up, we are pleased that we are seeing increased volumes in our primary care clinics. 

Our Emergency Department volumes continue to grow, and our physical, occupational and speech therapy services are starting to return this week. Many of our surgical procedures are returning, based on a semi-urgent determination made by our providers.

The hospital district continues to see a scarce number of patients testing positive for COVID-19.

As of May 5, Island Hospital has tested 812 with 28 positive cases, with nine tested in the emergency department, six as inpatients and 13 as outpatients. Note: We had reported 30 positives, but discovered that one patient tested positive twice and another was a false positive.

This week is National Hospital Week, in which we celebrate hospital staff for their special contributions to their communities. We are grateful for our entire healthcare team for the daily work and sacrifice they give. Please continue to help me recognize our amazing team.

I continue to be amazed at how much our local community has supported Island Hospital during the pandemic with food, snacks, flowers, banners of thanks, letters of appreciation and cash donations. 

Our staff continues to put forth exceptional and tireless efforts to help keep our community well, and these contributions have helped us immensely.

Our community’s efforts to follow pandemic guidelines are vital to limiting the spread of this virus here in our community. 

Please mask when in public buildings and follow other precautions.

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