COVID-19 Hospital Preparedness
The mission of Mercy Hospitals is to improve the health of our greater community by providing quality health care services, exceeding the expectations of those we serve.
The safety of our visitors, patients, employees, and physicians remains our highest priority. We want to assure the community that Mercy Hospitals are closely monitoring all developments with COVID-19 and we are prepared to identify, isolate, and treat any potential patient who seeks care at our facility. We are in contact with local and state health officials as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and our staff is following the latest guidance from these public health agencies. Mercy Hospitals has the supplies and equipment needed to effectively manage the care of any suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients and we are continuously assessing the volume of supplies at our hospital.
We also continue to update the way we identify patients who may have COVID-19 as changes are made to the case definition. We have a screening tool and algorithms as part of our electronic health record system that help clinicians evaluate patients who may have the virus, and we are asking those visiting our facilities if they are experiencing any symptoms consistent with infectious diseases, including COVID-19. Additionally, communication with our employees and physicians is of the utmost importance and we have implemented added trainings for our employees and regularly conduct exercises for clinicians and staff on the correct procedures for using personal protection equipment while treating patients who may have COVID-19.
We will continue to adjust our approach to make sure we are as prepared as possible to treat cases in our community.
Virtual Care visits for Mild COVID-19 Symptoms
We’re here for you during this challenging time of increased coronavirus cases. One of the best ways to protect yourself and your loved ones is to stay at home. To encourage this social distancing as well as continue to support your health and well-being, we’re offering virtual care visits. If you or a family member have mild COVID-19 symptoms such as low-grade fever, cough, or difficulty breathing, you can speak with a healthcare provider on your phone or other mobile device. Here are your options for accessing a virtual visit:
If using your computer desktop, please go to dignityhealth.org/virtualcareanywhere.
Please note, we have been receiving a high volume of requests at this time. We apologize for longer than usual wait times.
Crisis Response Guidelines
We continue to stay in close contact with the county department of health to determine the best way to care for an unprecedented surge of critically ill COVID-19 patients. If the number of patients exceeds our resources, and there are no alternate care sites available, we may need to implement triage guidelines so that limited resources are used equitably and consistent with national standards.
Triaging care during a crisis situation is the most difficult decision any care team has to make. At Dignity Health, triage guidelines are based on the unequivocal principle that we treat all patients with dignity and respect.
View our guidelines
Cold and Flu Season
What to do if you are sick
What you need to know
Kern County Public Health Department
Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)