Safely Resuming Care


As an essential service provider, Dignity Health is continuing to do its part to provide critical health care to our community—including resuming some medical procedures previously postponed during COVID-19’s initial peak.

As we begin scheduling more procedures in our hospitals, the health and safety of our patients and staff remain our top priorities. For their protection, Dignity Health has implemented the following safety protocols:

  • We continue to follow the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines as well as state and local government orders to ensure that we can safely and effectively provide essential medical care in our community.
  • We have implemented thorough COVID-19 screenings at all Dignity Health hospitals and care centers, including asking all patients and visitors if they have a fever or cough, if they have traveled recently and if they have had contact with anyone having COVID-19. We’re also taking the temperature of all patients and visitors before entering our hospitals.
  • COVID-19 patients are separated from all other patients in our hospital. 
  • Patients will be tested for COVID-19 before any scheduled procedure.
  • We’ve modified our visitor policy to ensure the safety of our patients and staff. All patients and visitors are required to wear a mask.
  • We are rigorously cleaning every surface in our hospitals and care centers to minimize the spread of any germs.

Thank you for your patience and understanding as we take these extra precautions to provide the safest environment possible for all who visit and work at our hospitals and care centers. For information on COVID-19 prevention, symptoms and what to do if you’re feeling sick, please visit the CDC website or the California Department of Public Health’s website.

Emergency Care

It’s important that if you are facing an emergency, you do not delay care. Call 911 or proceed immediately to the nearest emergency room. Here are examples of symptoms or emergencies where patients should always seek emergency treatment:

  • High fever, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Heart attack: Chest pain or discomfort, upper body pain or discomfort, shortness of breath (especially if coupled with jaw pain, fatigue, nausea, sweating and sudden dizziness)
  • Stroke: Face drooping, arm weakness, speech difficulty
  • Deep cuts, lacerations, or skin infections
  • Broken bones or traumatic injuries
  • Severe abdominal or stomach pain
  • Worsening symptoms related to chronic/ongoing conditions

Frequently Asked Questions

Which procedures are being resumed?

We are resuming some scheduled procedures. We won’t be able to provide every service right away – rather this will be a gradual process. Some procedures may be prioritized based on urgency and other factors such as whether a procedure was previously scheduled.

Why are we resuming some procedures?

Like most hospitals, we paused scheduled procedures in response to guidance from the CDC to reduce transmission of the virus and expand capacity for a surge of COVID-19 patients. Now that the initial peak of the pandemic appears to be behind us, national and state health officials and associations of medical professionals have released criteria for safely resuming scheduled procedures. We will only resume procedures when we are certain it is safe to do so and all of these criteria have been met.

Is it safe to receive care?

We are taking significant steps to make sure it is safe to be treated at our care facilities. We have a careful and detailed approach to determine which procedures can safely be performed, where they can be performed, and when they can be performed. We have a strict set of criteria that must be met before any procedures can resume. These include: The community must see a sustained reduction of cases; the care facility has enough personal protective equipment to keep patients and staff safe; and we have the ability to increase testing for both patients and staff at our care facilities.

When will I be able to receive my procedure?

We have begun to perform some procedures in our hospitals. This will be an ongoing process and we may not be able to immediately perform every desired procedure. Contact your physician to find out more about when you can receive your procedure.

What should I expect when I arrive?

Your experience getting care at one of our care facilities may be different than it was before COVID-19. For instance, all patients will be screened before entering the facility and will be required to wear a mask at all times. We will also work with patients to be tested for COVID-19 before receiving a procedure.

Will I need to be screened or tested before my procedure?

All patients coming for a scheduled procedure will be tested for COVID-19 before they receive care. Patients testing positive may need to alter their care plan in coordination with their physician.

Will I be in the same areas where patients with COVID-19 have been treated?

We have taken steps to ensure our positive COVID-19 patients are treated in a separate unit at all facilities.

Will we need to postpone scheduled procedures again?

If we see an increase in COVID-19 cases, we may reinstate some or all of the restrictions we have had in place. We will be closely monitoring COVID-19 cases in our area and the pace at which we resume procedures will be dictated by the realities in our community.