FCMH restricts visitors as COVID cases increase


The Record-Herald



Due to the increase in COVID-19 cases and a desire to keep patients and staff safe, Fayette County Memorial Hospital (FCMH) has announced that visitors are once again prohibited on the campus.

Obvious exceptions to this are minor children seeking care, a patient with a disability who relies on a caregiver or family member and end-of-life care. Other exceptions may be made in consultation with staff on a case-by-case basis in accordance with the patient’s needs.

FCMH CEO Mike Diener explained the facility is seeing a marked increase in the number of patients seeking care who are COVID-19 positive.

One recent weekend, the emergency department saw 12 patients who tested positive. The inpatient unit has had the highest number of COVID-19 positive patients since the beginning of the pandemic, according to Diener.

“We made the decision to restrict visitation due to several factors which we monitor on a daily basis. These include the rise in positive cases, the number of patients requiring hospitalization and the daily impact to our staffing levels due to the need for our caregivers to quarantine,” said Diener. “We continue to partner with the Fayette County Public Health District, healthcare providers in our region, and Fayette County Emergency Management, who brought us their supply trailer with additional cots should we have a need.”

He explained that earlier in the year FCMH established a plan to coordinate staffing and additional beds throughout the hospital in the event of an influx of patients beyond the facility’s 25-bed capacity.

According to Diener, “we are providing opportunities for caregivers from one department to train in another should the need for additional staffing arise. Their dedication and willingness to step up and do what is needed to ensure quality care is commendable.”

When asked how the community could best support the hospital and its caregivers, Diener said “this is a very serious time. Wear a mask and social distance. By protecting yourselves from the spread, you are protecting the nurses, physicians and other healthcare workers who are doing their best to get the community healthy again.”

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The Record-Herald