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Coronavirus Updates

Information About BCH and Its Response to COVID-19

People who have general questions about COVID-19 can call CO-HELP (Colorado’s call line for COVID-19) at 303-389-1687 or 877-462-2911.

CLICK HERE FOR COVID-19 VACCINE INFO

CLICK HERE FOR BCH COVID-19 TESTING

Mental Health, Safety and Protection Resources:

Which Masks Are Best for COVID-19 Infographic

BCH COVID-19 Testing

BCH currently has multiple options for COVID-19 testing for the community. We currently offer:

  • BCH Urgent Care Center COVID-19 Testing: Available 7 days a week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. All Urgent Care drive-up testing requires a video visit prior to testing.
  • BCH Lab COVID-19 Testing: Testing is available during normal business hours at the following lab locations: Foothills Hospital, Community Medical Center, Erie Medical Center

To learn more about these testing options, please click the button below.

CLICK HERE FOR BCH COVID-19 TESTING

BCH Mask Policy

To protect our patients and staff, all people entering a BCH patient care facility will be required to wear a mask (exceptions include children <2 yrs. old or medical reasons such as trouble breathing, unconsciousness, or someone unable to remove a mask without assistance). Patients and approved companions or visitors (including vendors) entering BCH inpatient care facilities will be screened on arrival.

*Bandanas, neck gaiters, and masks with valves are not acceptable.

BCH COVID-19 Screening Policy

Patients and approved visitors (including vendors) will be screened upon arrival to a BCH facility with the following questions:

  1. Do you have signs and symptoms of a respiratory illness such as fever (100.4 F and above), cough, difficulty breathing, chills, sore throat, muscle aches (myalgia) OR new loss of taste or smell? Your temperature will be taken to verify.
  2. In the last 14 days, have you had contact with a person who is positive or potentially positive for COVID-19 or with someone who is ill with respiratory illness?

If the answer is NO to both questions, the patient or visitor can enter wearing a mask

Masks:

  • For Outpatient services, a cloth mask is acceptable. Bandanas, neck gaiters, and masks with valves are not acceptable. A surgical mask will be given to you if need.
  • Inpatient, ED, and Urgent Care settings, patients and visitors will all be given a surgical mask.

If the answer is YES to either question, you may not enter.

Screening at Time of Scheduling

Patients who wish to schedule an appointment will be screened with the following questions:

  1. In the last 10 days, have you had signs and symptoms of respiratory illness such as fever, new cough, difficulty breathing, chills, sore throat, muscle aches (myalgia) OR new loss of smell or taste?
  2. In the last 30 days, have you been suspected of having COVID-19 or tested positive for COVID-19?
  3. In the last 14 days, have you had contact with a person who is suspected of having COVID-19 or positive for COVID-19 or someone who is ill with respiratory illness?

If your answers to any of these questions changes before your visit, please call us so we can discuss how to handle your situation. Also, you will be screened again upon arrival to confirm if you can be seen in person.

If the answer is YES to any of the above questions, please consider rescheduling as a virtual visit if possible.

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BCH Safer Check-In Process

BCH has been taking a very cautious and thoughtful approach to re-opening access to more medical services. We’ve called on expertise from across our organization, always focusing on patient and staff safety first while weighing all the risks.

Whether you are planning an in-person visit with your physician at one of our primary care or specialty clinics or you are coming to one of our medical facilities for a lab, imaging or surgery, we have instituted new check-in procedures to help keep all patients and staff safe. Please note that patients will be screened upon entry to any BCH office or building and will be required to wear a mask.

Check-in for BCH Medical Facility

We have made important changes in the registration process for patients scheduled to have surgery, heart catheterization, imaging scans and some other advanced procedures.

In order to maintain social distancing for patients and BCH staff, we now ask patients coming to our facilities for a scheduled service to stay in their cars and call us when they arrive for their appointment.

Step 1: Call (303) 415-8190 to let us know you are here. Please continue to wait in your car.

Step 2: A registration representative will call you to complete your check-in by phone. Please continue to wait in your car.

Step 3: A clinical representative will call to invite you inside the building and provide instruction on where to meet. Please note you will be screened upon entry to the building and will be required to wear a mask.

Step 4: Meet the clinical representative to begin your appointment.

This process applies to the following BCH building and departments:

  • Foothills Hospital: Surgery, Cardiology, Interventional Radiology, Lab, Mammography Services, General Imaging Services
  • Community Medical Center Imaging
  • Boulder Medical Center Imaging
  • Erie Medical Center Imaging & Lab

As another element of our social distancing strategy, we have moved to decentralized registration at Foothills Hospital. Patients now go to one of four areas to check-in, depending on the specific service they are having. We’ve installed new signs to direct patients to the appropriate locations.

Check-in at a Primary Care or Specialty Clinic

If you are coming to BCH for a traditional in-person physician visit, we encourage all patients to sign up for the MyBCH patient portal to utilize the e-check in function to minimize check-in time and fill out any required documentation before your visit. Once you arrive for your appointment, patients are given a tablet to complete check-in and are then escorted to an exam room to minimize/eliminate time in common areas.

Please note that in some cases a physician clinic may require patients to call the office upon arrival for a visit. This may be posted on the entrance to the clinic.

We also ask that any patients who develop COVID-19 symptoms any time between scheduling and their appointment day to please call and check with the clinic on how they should proceed. Depending on the situation, your physician will determine if a virtual visit is more appropriate, if you should call upon arrival or just check-in as usual.

These changes represent a very cautious approach that can help ensure our patients are able to have their necessary but less urgent procedures done at BCH as quickly as possible, with a high degree of safety.

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Updated Foothills Hospital Visitation Policy

Hours of visitation are 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

All visitors will have to be screened for symptoms and need to wear a mask.

Patients are allowed two designated visitors per patient per day. Those two visitors may stay with the patient any time during visiting hours, they may come separately or together but may not leave and return.

Exceptions include:

  • No visitors of patients placed in any type of isolation including COVID-19.
    • Exception: woman in labor who test positive for COVID-19 is allowed 1 visitor (typically someone who already lives in household).
    • Exceptions for end of life only made after consult and discussion with spiritual care.
  • No visitors of patients on the Inpatient Behavioral Health unit.
  • No visitors under the age of 15 (unless a patient or accompanying a patient for emergency medical care).
    • No visitors with symptoms consistent with COVID-19 or in contact with someone with known or suspected COVID-19 in the last 14 days.
  • No visitors for pre-operative or pre-procedural patients.
    • Exceptions may include parent or guardian of a minor or medical necessity as determined by the care team.

Hours of visitation are 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

  • Surgeries or procedures outside of visitation hours: post-op patients may have one visitor upon admission to their hospital room for a two-hour time frame. Visitation would return to normal hours the following day.
  • Visitors must remain in the patient room and masked at all times for the entire duration of the visit.

Foothills Hospital ED:

  • ED may have one visitor upon arrival when medically necessary as determined by the care team.

Important Considerations for Visitation

  • Patients with disabilities who require help with the provision of medical or behavioral health care, activities of daily living, speaking for the patient or keeping the patient safe, may have a designated assistance person.
  • Parent or guardian accompanying a minor.
  • Family Birth Center – Support person(s) (limit 2) for L&D. COVID-19 patients are limited to one visitor. Visitor is presumed positive and must remain in the room. If the visitor leaves during the hospital course, they may not return.
  • End of life situations – limit to 2 visitors for non-COVID-19 patients.
  • At-risk visitors who are immunocompromised, pregnant, and elderly should consult their doctor prior to visitation.
  • If weather prevents outdoor/vehicle waiting for outpatient or procedural services, waiting areas may be utilized with proper social distancing.

ADA Reference:

  • The Americans with Disabilities Act,1 Section 504 of the Rehabilitation
  • Act,2 and Section 1557 of the Affordable Care

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Virtual Visits Available

We now offer the opportunity to have a video or phone visit with your physician, as well as an E-Visit for those who don't need to speak directly with their care provider. You can schedule a video or phone visit by calling your clinic directly, calling the BCH scheduling number at (303) 415-4015 or by requesting an appointment through your MyBCH portal. Videos visits are only conducted through the MyBCH portal.

Learn more about these visits on our Virtual Visits page.

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BCH Closures to the Public

Stop the Spread of Germs

Detenga la Propagación de los Microbios

BCH is making changes across our network in order to lower potential exposure to respiratory illnesses, including COVID-19. Please see below for updated BCH closures:

BCH Patient Services Center Office Closed to the Public.

Our office will not be seeing patients in person. We are still available to serve the needs of our patients via the following:

  • Call the Patient Service Center at (303) 415-5300
  • Email patientservicecenter@bch.org
  • Payments or letters can be mailed to 5450 Western Avenue Boulder, CO 80301 or drop boxes are available at the main entrance on the outside of the building.
  • To pay online for services on or before September 30, 2019, the secure portal at bch.org/paymybill
  • To pay online for services on or after October 1, 2019, use the myBCH patient portal. Can sign up at my.bch.org or download the myBCH app from the App Store or Google Play.

Health Information Management Offices Closed to Public

As of 3/19/20, our Health Information Management offices will be temporarily closed to the public at our Pearl Parkway and Foothills Hospital locations. Patients who have questions or need assistance with their medical record can still reach us by phone at (303) 415-7760 Mon-Fri 8 a.m.-5 p.m. or by email at HIM@bch.org.

BCH Sleep Diagnostics Clinic Closed Until Further Notice

BCH Canceling Public Gatherings

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), limiting public gatherings is a very effective tool for slowing the spread of COVID‑19. We are following that CDC recommendation and canceling all non-essential public gatherings intended for community members. This is effective immediately and includes community education programs and wellness-related events.

We recognize that activities like community education programs are highly valued by community members and the BCH staff who provide those services. Accordingly, we have a task force working to identify alternative ways of providing such activities. We expect to begin using such new approaches in the near future.

As of March 18, BCH canceled all in-person free community health lectures. However, because providing this service to our community is important, folks can still "virtually attend" our free health lectures online, by visiting our Community Health Lecture Livestream page. On this page, you can watch our lectures live or view a recording the following day.

Thank you for understanding and supporting this effort to safeguard our community.

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Donating to BCH Foundation

Established in 1978, the Boulder Community Health Foundation is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization that exists to enhance the quality and availability of health care services in Boulder County by generating and administering all charitable gifts to our nonprofit community-owned hospital system.

COVID-19 Response Fund

With the continued spread of COVID-19 throughout Boulder County, the BCH Foundation has established the COVID-19 Response Fund, which helps raise money to help BCH employees directly affected by the virus and to help procure the equipment and services we need to care for our community during this time.

100% of all proceeds raised to this fund will continue to go directly to these areas of support:

  1. Support our most critical asset at BCH, our people.
    You can help us assist those BCH staff who are facing unanticipated financial challenges (e.g., needing child care due to the closing of schools, financial hardship from a spouse/partner being out of work, etc.). We will provide the assistance they need by significantly expanding the depth and breadth of support provided by the BCH Employee Assistance Fund.
  2. Remove any barriers to providing the best treatment for COVID–19.
    You can help by supporting BCH’s significant investment in our testing capability, expanding telehealth access, and planning for an increase in cases, including supply management, space capacity and flex training for our staff and physicians.

BCH leadership is confident in the ability and personal commitment of our clinical team to provide the best treatment and care to the community in the coming weeks. We need your help to support those caregivers. Please consider donating to our COVID-19 Response Fund.

Donate to Covid-19 Response Fund

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Mental Health, Safety and Protection Resources

Mental Health Tips from BCH Outpatient Behavioral Health

The Outpatient Behavioral Health team would like to offer some tips on coping with stress, change and uncertainty during this time of the pandemic. See below for our Q&A.

What are the top five ways to manage stress during the Coronavirus outbreak?

  • Stick to a routine: go to sleep and wake up at a reasonable consistent time.
  • Reach out to others at least 30 minutes per day (ie phone calls, FaceTime, Skype) to connect with other people; to seek and provide support.
  • Find humor in the challenges and the different coping strategies you have created.
  • Find and practice calming exercises such as deep breathing, listening to music, enjoying nature.
  • Find something to be grateful for everyday or in a moment where you feel challenged. (At least my toilets flush!)

How do you prevent burnout during these trying times?

  • Do one thing mindfully rather than pushing yourself to multitask.
  • Maintain connections with family and work colleagues.
  • Find deeply relaxing activities to do daily. Be okay with doing nothing.

How can you prevent negative thinking during COVID-19 quarantine at home?

  • Note what you do have control over and focus on what you can change.
  • Allow life to be “good enough.”
  • Practice kindness toward yourself and others.
  • Give everyone the benefit of the doubt and a wide berth. Everyone will have moments where they are not at their best. It is important to move with grace through blowups and arguments.
  • Remember everyone is doing the best that they can do through this crisis.
  • Normalize, accept and be patient with the wide variety of emotions and physical sensations you are having in response to this state of emergency.
  • Ask yourself: “What gives me hope right now? Where do I find hope?”
  • Reflect on the changes that have been positive. Ask, “Do I prioritize what I value most?"

What are your self-care tips right now for folks?

  • Every day get showered and dressed in comfortable clothes, wash your face, brush your teeth, take a shower/bath and dress in day clothes.
  • Live in the moment
  • Practice gratitude
  • Make a daily routine
  • Practice deep breathing
  • Make yourself accountable to someone (partner, friend)
  • Access free apps and online resources for meditation, breathing exercises, relaxation, yoga, learning, etc. (Some of our favorites: MyStrength through BCH, Headspace, Calm, Insight Timer)
  • Prepare nutritious meals.
  • Limit news intake. Stringently

What is the best advice for children during COVID-19?

  • Expect behavioral issues in children and respond gently.
  • Expect increased anxiety, worries, and fears, nightmares, difficulty separating or sleep, testing limits, and meltdowns.
  • Focus on emotional connection.
  • Create time each day to play, bake or learn a new skill together.

If these daily coping strategies are not working and you find yourself overwhelmed with emotions you can do the following:

  • Walk away from the situation. Go for a walk, do something to take your mind off the problem.
  • Call the 24/7 Crisis Line at 1-844-493-8255.
  • You can go to the Crisis Walk-in Center: 3180 Airport Rd., Boulder.
  • Get more support by finding a therapist through EAP, your insurance company; online at psychologytoday.com/us/therapists, or by contacting Mental Health Partners at 303-443-8500.

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Mental Health and Coping Strategies During COVID-19

Fear and anxiety about COVID-19 can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions in adults and children. We’ve gathered some resources and tools to help manage anxiety and reduce stress in yourself and others during this outbreak.

  • Stress and coping: Taking care of yourself, your friends and your family can help you cope with stress. Helping others cope with their stress can also make your community stronger. Learn what you can do to support yourself and others. Read how. En español
  • Talking to children about COVID-19: It’s very important to remember that children look to adults for guidance on how to react to stressful events. Helping children cope with anxiety about COVID-19 requires providing accurate prevention information and facts without causing undue alarm. Learn more. En español
  • Reducing fear and taking care of yourself: We need to be careful that fear is not what we spread across our communities. When we take actions that help us be prepared, healthy and informed, we can spread calm instead. Learn more. En español
  • Coping strategies for those with mental health vulnerabilities: People affected by mental illness face additional challenges dealing with COVID-19. Read how to take care of yourself and check in on loved ones with mental health vulnerabilities. Learn more. En español

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Safety Tips for COVID-19

We understand this is a stressful time and people want to know what steps to take to protect themselves and their families from COVID-19. In addition to staying informed about what’s happening in our community and always following the directions of state and local authorities, we’ve gathered some important information and guidance to help you and your loved ones remain safe.

  • Caring for someone with COVID-19: If you are caring for someone at home, it’s important to know how to monitor for emergency signs, prevent the spread of germs, treat symptoms, and carefully consider when to end home isolation. Learn more.
  • How to isolate at home when you have COVID-19: If you are sick with COVID-19 or think you might have it, follow these steps to help protect other people in your home and community. Learn more.
  • How to protect pets if you are sick: If you are sick with COVID-19 (either suspected or confirmed), you should restrict contact with pets and other animals, just like you would around other people. Learn more.
  • Coronavirus self-checker: The purpose of the Coronavirus Self-Checker is to help you make decisions about seeking appropriate medical care. Learn more.

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Protecting Yourself From COVID-19

Your health and safety are our top priority. In addition to staying informed about what’s happening in our community and always following the directions of state and local authorities, we’ve gathered some important information and guidance to protect you and your loved ones from COVID-19.

  • How to strengthen your immunity with nutrition: Good nutrition is essential to a strong immune system, which may offer protection from illness and other health problems. No one food or supplement can prevent illness, but you may help support your immune system by including these nutrients in your overall eating plan on a regular basis. Learn more.
  • Ways to disinfect your home if someone is sick: Learn about every day steps and extra steps for cleaning and disinfecting when someone in your household is sick or confirmed with COVID-19. Learn more.
  • Pregnancy and breastfeeding information about COVID-19: What is the risk to pregnant women of getting COVID-19? Is it easier for pregnant women to become ill with the disease? How can pregnant women protect themselves from getting COVID-19? These and other questions are answered here.
  • Resources for older adults and their families: According to early data shared by the CDC, older adults are twice as likely to have serious COVID-19 illness because as people age, their immune systems change, making it harder for their body to fight off diseases and infection. Many older adults are also more likely to have underlying health conditions that make it harder to cope with and recover from illness. Learn more.

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For more frequently asked questions, please visit the CDC FAQ and WHO FAQ.

Additional Coronavirus Resources

Related Physicians

Important Information

Boulder Community Health is following current guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that call for patients and visitors to continue wearing masks at Foothills Hospital and all BCH patient-care facilities.

People 12 and older are eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine. For updated Vaccine Clinic hours and general vaccine info, please visit our vaccine page.