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Responding to pandemic

HCH, health department provide information
Responding to pandemic Responding to pandemic

Harrison County Hospital and the county health department are working closely with each other to monitor the COVID-19 situation and prepare to treat potential patients.

According to a press release Monday afternoon from the hospital, the best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to the virus.

The public is reminded to avoid crowds and practice social distancing. The virus is thought to spread person to person and between persons in close contact —within about six feet — and through respiratory droplets in the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

The hospital urges people who are sick to stay home.

Other guidelines to help from spreading the virus include:

Wash your hands often and with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after you have been in a public place or after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.

Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.

Cover cough/sneeze with a tissue and then throw the tissue in the trash can.

Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces regularly.

It is imperative that seniors age 60 and older follow the guidelines and avoid public places, according to health officials.

If you believe you have been exposed to COVID-19, and develop a fever above 100.4, experience symptoms of respiratory illness such as a cough or difficulty breathing, diarrhea and/or myalgia, contact your health care provider by telephone immediately. Individuals who do experience those symptoms are asked to self-quarantine. It is critical for you to call ahead before you go to a doctor’s office, immediate care center or seek emergency medical care.

The Indiana State Dept. of Health can be reached at 1-877-826-0011.

Harrison County Hospital has two options for the public to conduct tele-health video visits with a provider for those who have internet capability at home. IU Health is offering free coronavirus screenings for Indiana residents and Norton Healthcare has a virtual visit option. Information to connect to these technologies is available at

The following temporary visitation guidelines have been put into place at Harrison County Hospital to protect patients, staff and the community:

Labor and Delivery — Parents, grandparents and siblings without a fever or runny nose will be allowed to visit, although the number of visitors is limited to two at a time.

All other adult units (non-maternity) — Patients in intensive care units as well as telemetry and medical/surgical patients will be allowed up to two immediate family visitors at a time.

Clergy — Clergy members are welcome for palliative care, emergency and hospice care and patient support along with immediate family members only. Compassionate visitation exceptions will be made on a case-by-case basis.

The hospital has implemented a patient/visitor screening process effective immediately at all three entrances (the emergency department, main entrance and medical office building).

For all off-site locations, patients should stay in the car and call the office from the parking lot to be screened before entry.