Coronavirus (COVID-19) Preparedness Information

COVID-19

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Preparedness Information

Preparedness Updates

Chan Soon-Shiong Medical Center at Windber continues to monitor the evolving coronavirus (COVID-19) situation and is taking the necessary steps to effectively care for our patients and properly protect our healthcare workers. Ultimately, our goal is to provide quality care while ensuring the health and safety of our patients, employees, and visitors. To that end, we are working closely with the Pennsylvania Department of Health and following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) response and preparedness recommendations.

About COVID-19

Learn about the science behind the coronavirus by watching a series of 7 videos created by Chan Soon-Shiong Medical Center at Windber’s Board Chair Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong. Soon-Shiong is a surgeon and scientist who has spent his career studying the human immune system to fight cancer and infectious diseases.

If you have questions or concerns about COVID-19, please access the Pennsylvania Department of Health website at www.health.pa.gov. Because the situation is rapidly evolving, this website is continually being updated with new information and guidance. If the online resources do not address your concern, then you may submit an email to RA-DHCOVIDQUESTIONS@pa.gov.

Prevention

If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever and symptoms of respiratory illness, such as cough or difficulty breathing, call your healthcare provider immediately. Additionally, you should restrict activities outside of your home, and if necessary seek medical care. Avoid large crowds and gatherings.

For a more detailed document about what to do if you suspect you are sick with COVID-19, click here for a CDC Fact Sheet.

If you suspect that you have COVID-19 and have a medical appointment, please call ahead to inform the office so they can take steps to avoid infecting or exposing other people.


Preparedness Updates

3/31/21, Noon

COVID-19 Vaccines Update:

  • Our COVID-19 vaccine line is open for scheduling. Please call 814-467-3013.
    • Who is eligible for a vaccine at this time?

      • Individuals in the 1A category:
        • Long-term care facility residents
        • Persons ages 65 and older
        • Persons ages 16-64 with high-risk conditions causing increased risk for severe disease
        • Health care personnel
      • Individuals in the current PA DOH targeted initiative:
        • Law enforcement. Defined as police, sheriffs and deputies, constables, corrections officers and staff, as well as probation and parole staff.
        • Firefighters. Defined as both career and volunteer firefighters.
        • Grocery Store workers. Defined as all workers in supermarkets and grocery stores. This does not include workers from super centers, convenience stores, general retail with some smaller footprint for food sales, beverage stores, and farmer’s markets.
        • Food and Agriculture workers. Defined as all food processing company employees, including meat, poultry, and dairy processing, fresh fruit and vegetable packing operations, and food manufacturing. Also includes all farmworkers, farm operators, and farm managers, including at urban agriculture operations.

3/17/21, 4 p.m.

Visitor Policy Update:

  • Beginning March 17, Ambulatory Surgery Unit (ASU) and surgery patients will be permitted one healthy visitor to accompany them.
    • Clarification: Based on capability to properly maintain social distancing guidelines, visitors of surgery patients who are transferred to Wing III will be permitted to be in the patient’s room prior to regular visiting hours (2 – 6 p.m.) on the day of admittance. On subsequent days, visitors are to abide by regular visiting hours.
    • Visitors will be screened upon entrance and will be required to wear a mask and an armband while in the facility.
    • Visitors may wait in the waiting rooms, maintaining social distancing.
  • Beginning March 17, Emergency Department patients will be permitted one healthy visitor to accompany them, based on capability to properly maintain social distancing guidelines.
    • Visitors will be screened upon entrance and will be required to wear a mask and an armband while in the facility.

3/15/21, 10:15 a.m.

Visitor Policy Update:

  • Beginning March 17, Ambulatory Surgery Unit (ASU) and surgery patients will be permitted one healthy visitor to accompany them.
    • Visitors will be screened upon entrance and will be required to wear a mask and an armband while in the facility.
    • Visitors may wait in the waiting rooms, maintaining social distancing.

3/5/21, 10:00 a.m.

HealthStyles Fitness Center Update:

  • Aquatics classes will recommence on April 5.
  • Members no longer need to make an appointment for gym time. Classes will still be scheduled using online scheduling.

2/24/21, 11:30 a.m.

COVID-19 Vaccines Update:

  • We have received a new shipment of the COVID-19 vaccine and are currently scheduling those in group 1A who are on our waiting list.
  • Registration to our waiting list is currently closed as we continue to makes changes to improve the registration and scheduling process. Please call the vaccine line at 814-467-3013, visit this page, or view our Facebook page for the latest updates. Thank you for you continued patience.

2/18/21, 3:00 p.m.

Cafeteria Update:

  • The Cafeteria is now open to visitors and the public.
    • They must come in through a screening entrance, as any visitor would, and will be required to wear a mask and an armband while in the facility.
    • The outside door leading to the Cafeteria will remain locked until further notice.

Volunteer Update:

  • Our volunteer program will recommence on Monday, March 15.

Event Update:

  • The Weight Loss Seminar will recommence on Tuesday, March 9. The seminars are held the second Tuesday of every month a 5:30 p.m. in Windber Place.
  • The Bereavement Support Group will recommence on Tuesday, March 30. The meetings are held the last Tuesday of every month from 4-5 p.m. in Windber Place.

2/10/21, 10:00 a.m.

Visitor Policy Update:

  • Beginning February 12, inpatients on Wing III will be permitted one healthy visitor per day between 2 and 6 p.m., seven days per week.
    • Entrances for visitors:
      • Weekdays between 2 and 4 p.m. – Main Entrance or Emergency Department
      • Weekdays between 4 and 6 p.m. – Emergency Department
      • Weekends between 2 and 6 p.m. – Emergency Department
    • Visitors will be screened upon entrance and will be required to wear a mask and an armband while in the facility.
    • No visitors will be permitted in room of patients who have tested positive for COVID-19 or are under the investigation of COVID-19.
    • Special considerations may be made for emergency and end-of-life care.
  • Our policy still allows for one designated patient support person at the patient’s bedside for pediatric patients and patients for whom the hospital determines a support person is essential to the care of the patient, including patients with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities and patients with cognitive impairments such as dementia.

2/4/21, Noon

COVID-19 Vaccines Update:

  • For our must up-to-date information regarding vaccines, please call 814-467-3013 to listen to a recording. Currently, the message directs those who fall into Pennsylvania’s group 1A, who are interested in receiving the vaccine when it becomes available, to send their contact information via email to vaccine@windbercare.org to be placed on a list.
  • Pending adequate availability of the COVID-19 vaccine, we will begin reaching out to the community during the last week of February or the first week of March. Those in group 1A who have emailed their information to vaccine@windbercare.org will be contacted to schedule an appointment as supply allows.

1/21/21, 1:00 p.m.

COVID-19 Vaccines Update:

  • For our must up-to-date information regarding vaccines, please call 814-467-3013 to listen to a recording. Currently, the message directs healthcare workers and those who fall into Pennsylvania’s group 1A, who are interested in receiving the vaccine when it becomes available, to send their contact information via email to vaccine@windbercare.org to be placed on a list.

At this time, we have exhausted our first vaccine supply with first and second doses for individuals in the 1A group. We are unaware of when our next shipment of vaccines will arrive from the Pennsylvania Department of Health. We will immediately notify the public when our new shipment arrives and when we plan to begin to vaccinate. CSSMCW will continue to follow the PA DOH guidelines.

We understand the eagerness to receive the vaccine and are diligently working with the PA DOH to obtain additional vaccines so that we can continue to help efficiently vaccinate our community, resuming with healthcare workers and individuals who fall into the 1A group. We appreciate your continued support in keeping our region safe.

1/6/21, 1:30 p.m.

COVID-19 Vaccines Update:

  • Chan Soon-Shiong Medical Center at Windber (CSSMCW) continues to follow the Pennsylvania Department of Health guidelines regarding COVID-19 vaccine distribution. There are three phases of the distribution:
    • Phase 1: The vaccines will be first available to healthcare personnel, emergency medical services first responders, and residents and staff of congregate care settings.
    • Phase 2: A larger supply of vaccines will be available to those critical Phase 1 populations who were not yet vaccinated and the general population who have high-risk conditions, including cancer, diabetes, lung disease, or a weakened immune system.
    • Phase 3: A sufficient supply of vaccines will be available for the entire population.

Currently, CSSMCW has finished their initial vaccine supply, thus completing the first series of injections for the Phase 1 population. The second series of injections will soon be given to only those in the Phase 1 population who received their first injection at CSSMCW.

The hospital does not yet know when additional vaccine supplies will be available for Phase 2 and Phase 3 populations.

12/31/20, 12:00 p.m.

HealthStyles Fitness Center Update:

  • Beginning 1/4/21 all HealthStyles Fitness Center locations will reopen.

12/11/20, Noon

HealthStyles Fitness Center Update:

  • Per Governor Wolf’s COVID-19 mitigation efforts, beginning 12/12/20 all HealthStyles Fitness Center locations are closed and all classes are canceled until further notice.

12/8/20, 3:00 p.m.

Orthopedic Walk-In Clinic Update:

  • Due to COVID-19 restrictions, please call ahead for an appointment or to check availability – 814-467-3628.

12/1/20, 12:00 p.m.

HealthStyles Fitness Center Update:

  • All aquatics classes are canceled until further notice.

11/30/20, 2:30 p.m.

Events Update:

  • The following events are canceled until further notice:
    • Monthly Bereavement Support Group
    • Monthly Weight Loss Seminar

11/23/20, 2:30 p.m.

Visitor Policy Update:

  • Effective November 24, no visitors (including volunteers, students, and outside vendors) will be permitted to enter the facility.
    • Patients will be screened at the entrances and will be required to wear a mask and an armband while in the facility.
    • Special considerations may be made for emergency and end-of-life care.
  • Our policy still allows for one designated patient support person at the patient’s bedside for pediatric patients and patients for whom the hospital determines a support person is essential to the care of the patient, including patients with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities and patients with cognitive impairments such as dementia.

11/18/20, 3 p.m.

Visitor Policy Update:

  • Effective November 19, visitor hours will be further limited. Patients are permitted one healthy visitor per day between the hours of 2 and 4 p.m., seven days a week.
    • Visitors will be screened at the entrances and will be required to wear a mask and an armband while in the facility.
    • Special considerations may be made for emergency and end-of-life care.
  • Our policy still allows for one designated patient support person at the patient’s bedside for pediatric patients and patients for whom the hospital determines a support person is essential to the care of the patient, including patients with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities and patients with cognitive impairments such as dementia.

Visitor Policy Update:

  • Effective November 19, the cafeteria will be open for employees only.

6/10/20, 2 p.m.

Visitor Policy Update:

  • As of Thursday June 11, patients will be permitted one healthy visitor per day between the hours of 12 Noon and 4 p.m., seven days a week.
    • Visitors will be screened at the entrances and will be required to wear a mask and an armband while in the facility.
    • Special considerations may be made for emergency and end-of-life care.
  • Our policy still allows for one designated patient support person at the patient’s bedside for pediatric patients and patients for whom the hospital determines a support person is essential to the care of the patient, including patients with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities and patients with cognitive impairments such as dementia.

Events Update

  • Visit www.windbercare.org to view updated events, fundraisers, support groups, and department seminars as they are reintroduced.

Volunteers Update

  • As of Monday, June 15, our volunteer program will recommence.

6/8/20, 1 p.m.

HealthStyles Re-Opening:

Additionally, every member will have their temperature checked upon arrival. Masks will not be required unless you are going elsewhere in the hospital. The locker rooms will be closed for the time being. Please limit the amount of personal items you bring inside with you.

Please note, the Davidsville and Portage HealthStyles locations reopened on Friday, June 5.

If you have specific questions for any location, please call the main HealthStyles number: 814-467-3632.

4/17/20, 2:30 p.m.

New mask guidelines, effective Monday, April 20:

  • While in the facility all employees must wear a mask or cloth face covering at all times, except to eat or drink during a break.
  • While in the facility, all visitors must also wear a cloth face covering or mask, if tolerated. If they don’t have one upon entering, please give them a homemade cloth face covering or surgical mask, as supplies allow.
  • For CDC instructions for making your own cloth face covering, visit: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/diy-cloth-face-coverings.html
  • If you know someone who wishes to donate masks or homemade cloth face coverings, please have them contact Kim Oleksa at 814-467-3705 or koleksa@windbercare.org to arrange a drop-off. Cloth masks help us preserve our medical-grade masks for patient care.

3/30/20, 3:00 p.m.

  • UPDATE: Door times have changed. All employees and visitors must report to one of these entrances to be screened before entering the hospital:
    • Emergency Department Open 24/7
    • Main Registration Open M-F 6:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.
    • 3rd Floor Corridor Open M-F 6:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.
    • Orthopedic Walk-In Clinic Open M-F 8:00 a.m. – 4 p.m.
    • HealthStyles (5th Floor) Open M-Th 6:30 a.m. – 6 p.m. & F 6:30 a.m. – Noon
  • Effective immediately, all visitors/patients will receive a red armband to signify to all departments that they have been screened at an entrance door.

3/23/20., 6:00 p.m.

  • Beginning tomorrow, March 24, all employees and visitors must enter one of these doors on Monday – Friday from 6:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.: Emergency Department, Main Registration Area, 3rd Floor Corridor, or HealthStyles (5th Floor). You will have a screening before entering the facility.
    • Monday – Friday from 7 p.m. to 6:30 a.m. and all day on weekends, the Emergency Department must be used.
    • Access to the Orthopedic Walk-In Clinic is limited to patients only.
  • We are requesting that all patients refrain from visiting Medical Records in person. Please call them at 814-467-3805 and they will handle your request via phone.

3/23/20, 3:00 p.m.

  • Effective tomorrow, no patient visitors are permitted. Special considerations will be made for emergency care and end-of-life care.
  • Effective tomorrow, the cafeteria is open to employees only for take out.
    • Breakfast 7:30 – 9:30 a.m.
    • Lunch 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.

3/19/20, 3:30 p.m.

  • Effective today, CSSMCW is no longer performing elective surgeries. Chief of Surgery Dr. Taesun Moon said, “Guidelines have been established to determine what meets the criteria of elective surgery. We will postpone elective surgeries for 30 days that will not harm the patient by waiting that period of time.”These measures are taken to conserve personal protective equipment for healthcare workers and blood supplies, as well as to limit visitors in the hospital.We currently have adequate staff to maintain all of the available beds within our hospital. We are working with our WindberCare Physicians to screen and refer only appropriate patients to the emergency department and inpatient units.

In addition to our emergency preparedness plan for COVID-19, we are available to meet all other care needs of our community as an acute care facility. We recognize our responsibility to adequately care for all patients during this time.

While postponing elective surgery, we maintain the capability of performing all other services, including emergency surgery, urgent medical care, heart catheterizations, diagnostic lab testing, all x-ray imaging, and all rehabilitation services (physical, occupational, and speech therapies; cardiac rehabilitation; and pulmonary rehabilitation).

3/18/20, 4:00 p.m.

  • Effective March 19, seating in the cafeteria will be reserved for ONLY patients, visitors, and emergency and postal personnel.

3/17/20, 3:30 p.m.

  • Effective immediately, only one healthy visitor is permitted per patient.
  • Beginning March 19, our volunteer program will be suspended until further notice.
  • All planned community events, fundraisers, support groups, and department seminars are cancelled or postponed until further notice. These include:
    • March 23 – May 11 – New Volunteer Training
    • March 28 – Cornhole Tournament
    • March 31 – Monthly Bereavement Support Group (until further notice)
    • April 1 – Pediatric Therapies Painting Party Fundraiser
    • April 7 – Seminar – What’s the Skinny on Obesity?
    • April 7 – Breast Cancer Support Group
    • April 14 – Monthly Weight Loss Seminar (until further notice)
    • April 19 – Afternoon Tea Fundraiser
    • April 21 – Quarterly Bariatric Support Group
    • April 29 – Knee Seminar

3/16/20, 1 p.m.

  • Because HealthStyles Fitness Center is both clinical and non-clinical in nature, we are taking the following precautions to care for our members and patients. Beginning Tuesday, March 17, HealthStyles Fitness Center will be closed to all members until further notice. The facility will remain in use for ONLY Cardiac Rehabilitation, Pulmonary Rehabilitation, and Physical Therapy.
    • All classes are canceled.
    • The walking track will be open for patient use ONLY.
    • This also includes Portage and Davidsville HealthStyles sites.

Resources

Pennsylvania Department of Health

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention