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Coronavirus Update: Virtual Visits & Emergency Treatments

Last weekend, BCH provided another email update to community members relating our health system's ongoing preparations against COVID-19. On Saturday, April 18, CEO & President Rob Vissers, M.D., related encouraging news about the pandemic’s impact on Colorado. Our community's ongoing efforts to flatten the COVID-19 curve by wearing masks, practicing social distancing and constant hand washing are having an impact.

As of Monday (4/20), BCH had nine confirmed COVID-19 patients hospitalized at Foothills Hospital. We had 11 patients who were awaiting test results to confirm if they had COVID-19.

dr. robert vissers

From Rob Vissers, M.D. - CEO & President, BCH

At a time when we’re all asked to limit trips outside our homes, a visit to the doctor may seem out of the question. But if you have a new or ongoing health condition, or develop a medical emergency, it’s critical to get treatment right away, even during this pandemic. Boulder Community Health’s staff and facilities are prepared to treat a comprehensive range of medical issues while keeping patients protected from the COVID-19 virus.

Doctor Visits Are Available — In-Person and Virtually

Anyone undergoing troubling changes in his or her health condition – whether it’s shortness of breath, severe headaches or ongoing nausea – should seek medical attention. In some cases, delaying treatment too long can turn a minor issue into a major problem.

People with ongoing medical concerns, such as chronic heart disease, also need to continue checking in with their physicians. Changes in a chronic condition need to be properly assessed.

BCH primary care and specialty care clinics now offer current and new patients a range of options for assessing and treating medical conditions, from traditional in-person visits for serious issues to a variety of “virtual” visits for routine concerns. Learn more about our virtual options.

Urgent Care Centers Offer Extended Hours

If your problem is not life- or limb-threatening but you are concerned and cannot speak to your health care provider soon enough, go to one of BCH’s three Urgent Care Centers. Medical issues commonly treated at an Urgent Care include cuts, ear or eye infections, and flu symptoms.

Urgent Care is available from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. seven days a week. Urgent Care staff are trained to safeguard patients from exposure to COVID-19.

Emergencies Need Quick Treatment

Seconds count in a medical emergency, so you should call 911 or go to our Foothills Hospital Emergency Department immediately if your symptoms are life- or limb-threatening. Emergency responders and Emergency Department staff know how to keep you safe from the threat of COVID-19.

What BCH is Doing to Keep You Safe

To further reduce everyone’s risk of exposure to respiratory illnesses, BCH is introducing new screening requirements at all facilities. Starting Monday, April 20, all individuals entering any BCH patient care facility (Foothills Hospital, primary or specialty care clinics, urgent care centers) will be required to wear a mask such as a surgical or cloth mask. Exceptions include children under the age of two, individuals who cannot wear a mask due to a known medical reason such as trouble breathing, or the inability to remove a mask without assistance.

Additionally, all patients and visitors entering Foothills Hospital will be screened upon entering the facility for signs and symptoms of respiratory illness or for known contact with someone with respiratory illness in the past 14 days, including suspected or confirmed COVID-19.

The Power of Community Support

Providing patient care in this era of pandemic can be physically exhausting. The bond that develops between doctors, nurses and our patients is what keeps us going. I want to end this message by quoting part of a beautiful note we received recognizing the emotional support provided to a COVID-19 patient and his family by the physicians and nurses in the BCH ICU –

“Thank you for calling me when my dad was having a very difficult time without any visitors. You gave me suggestions of things I could place in a care package (favorite snacks, pictures of the family, cards…) that could be brought to the hospital for him. Because I was not allowed in the building, you met me outside when I arrived to personally retrieve and deliver these items to my dad. The care package did exactly what you knew it would do and lifted his spirits while aiding in his recovery. It was so above and beyond to call and offer suggestions and then wait outside during your lunch break for me to deliver a package…I will never forget your kindness and thoughtfulness.”

For more information about COVID-19 and BCH-related updates, please visit our COVID-19 Resources page