At least two hospitals in Metro East announced Tuesday they are resuming elective surgeries that had been put on hold.
Hospital posting announcements were Anderson Hospital in Maryville and HSHS St. Elizabeth’s in O’Fallon. The moves are in accordance with Gov. J.B. Pritzker announcement of a modified stay-at-home order through May that allows certain elective surgeries for non-life-threatening conditions,
The moves affects some jobs. Both hospitals had furloughed employees in recent weeks.
“We are excited to bring back staff that were affected by the discontinuation of elective surgeries in mid-March due to COVID19. Those affected are being brought back for the reopening of our Surgery Center on Monday, May 11. This is a great first step in bringing more normalcy to our healthcare system for our patients and staff,” said Keith Page, Anderson Hospital president and CEO. “We are following the guidelines set by the Illinois Department of Public Health and will proceed with an abundance of caution as we move forward.”
HSHS also commented on jobs.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has had a rapid and dramatic impact on healthcare,” the system said in a statement. “In order to continue to serve our mission long into the future, HSHS recently had to make significant changes in our organization which included voluntary and involuntary furloughs of our colleagues. As we begin to reopen specific services, we are continuously evaluating how to best align our staff and supply resources with the evolving patient demand. We remain fully committed to continuously improving the lives of our patients and the communities we serve well into the future.”
Hospital Sisters Health System has 15 hospitals between Illinois and Wisconsin and fully owns two Illinois-based physician groups: Prairie Cardiovascular Consultants and HSHS Medical Group.
Here are statements regarding the plans for elective surgeries from each:
HSHS St. Elizabeth’s Hospital
HSHS St. Elizabeth’s Hospital plans to resume elective surgeries early next week.
Those who had previously scheduled surgical procedures that were delayed due to the Illinois Stay-at-Home order during April will be contacted by their surgeon’s office to reschedule their surgery in upcoming weeks/months. Once scheduled, the hospital will contact patients for to be registered and to gather other insurance and medical history information.
HSHS Illinois Division Chief Nursing Executive Allison Paul shared, “We have not offered non-emergent procedures because of the Governor’s order for several weeks and there is quite a backlog of cases at each of our HSHS Illinois hospitals. We encourage patients to contact your doctor for more information about when you can get your procedure scheduled in the coming weeks.”
St. Elizabeth’s Hospital will be following all Illinois Department of Public Health guidelines to ensure the safety of patients and staff. Included in these guidelines that the hospital will be following are:
- All patients preparing for an elective procedure must have a negative COVID-19 test on file within 72 hours of a scheduled procedure and must self-quarantine after being tested until the day of surgery to limit their risk of exposure. Patients will be informed during a pre-surgical call the most convenient place to undergo this testing. St. Elizabeth’s will only be testing patients scheduled for procedures at their facility.
- The patient’s one support person that will be allowed to accompany them the day of their surgery will also be screened.
- The hospital’s current visitor restrictions will still apply to minimize traffic within the hospital to keep patients and the community safe.
Additionally, all patients and visitors will be required to wear a mask at all times while at the hospital. They may bring their own from home or will be given one at the hospital. The patient and support person will also be screened as they enter the hospital the day of the surgery.
Executive Director of Surgical Services Susan Holloway, RN, BSN, shared, “During the unknown early stages of COVID-19 in the nation and our communities many hospitals, like ours, cancelled elective surgeries to ensure the hospital had the capacity to care for these patients and prepare for a surge. We are grateful that we can now begin to provide elective surgeries again to our area residents,” she said. St. Elizabeth’s Hospital has established processes in place and we are working closely with our surgeons and other specialists to schedule procedures as soon as safely possible. We recognize there are many patients who are seeking care and we will do everything we can to accommodate requests for our care in a timely manner, while also ensuring we maintain a safe hospital environment for all patients we serve.”
For more information about HSHS St. Elizabeth’s Hospital, visit www.steliz.org.
Anderson Hospital will resume elective surgeries starting Monday, May 11.
“It is our intent to run a full schedule,” said Dan Rojek, Anderson Hospital director of Surgical Services. “However, daily review of census and supplies may cause an adjustment in the schedule.”
In addition, the following restrictions will be in place:
- As part of the Illinois Department of Public Health criteria, all elective surgery patients must receive COVID testing prior to case. *Does not include emergency cases.
- The COVID testing will be ordered by the surgeon/physician through Anderson’s pre-op nursing staff.
- Patients will be scheduled at our pre-authorized Drive Thru testing site located at 2930 North Center Street in Maryville, 48 – 72 hours in advance.
- Following COVID testing, patients will be asked to self-isolate until the day of surgery/procedure.
- The Surgery Center entrance off of Vadalabene Drive (green canopy) will be open to surgery center patients only.
- Patients will have to wear a mask when coming to the hospital.
- Patient’s family/support persons will be instructed to wait in their cars.
- Preauthorization by staff will be made for any patients requiring a support person to accompany them inside the facility (i.e. pediatric cases, patients with disabilities, etc.).
- If a support person is deemed appropriate, they will be screened prior to entry with temperature check and COVID symptom question checking. They will be required to wear a mask.