Today, in accordance with recommendations from the U.S. Surgeon General and the American College of Surgeons, the Renown Health Joint Medical Executive Committee decided that effective Tuesday, March 17, surgical cases scheduled at both Renown Regional Medical Center and Renown South Meadows Medical Center, considered to be ELECTIVE-OPTIONAL will be postponed to a later date. Patients with scheduled ELECTIVE-OPTIONAL surgeries will be called by Renown Health representatives over the next week. Surgeon’s offices will also be reaching out to assist patients with rescheduling their surgeries for a future date. Elective surgeries that are REQUIRED and not optional will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis daily with the surgeon, patient and a medical leadership review committee at Renown. Your surgeon’s office will be in contact with you with more information about these REQUIRED surgeries This temporary measure will allow Renown’s physicians and staff to enact the emergency preparedness plans they have been developing for weeks to create additional capacity for inpatients and to continue to deliver high quality care during the anticipated surge in COVID-19 cases in northern Nevada. The new guidelines do NOT apply to EMERGENCY surgeries performed in Renown hospitals. There are different types of surgery, this decision impacts Elective-Optional surgeries only. Elective – Optional surgery – Elective surgeries are not usually necessary for the individual to stay in good health. They are non-emergency and planned in advance. A wide range of surgeries can be elective. Most cosmetic surgeries are elective. Other surgeries such as organ donation, scoliosis surgery, tonsillectomies and other minor surgeries can also be considered elective. Required surgery – Surgery which needs to be done in order to retain quality of life. As opposed to urgent or emergency surgery, required surgeries do not need to be performed immediately. Examples of required surgery are kidney stone or tumor removal. Urgent or emergency surgery – When a patient’s condition is life threatening, surgery is considered emergent. Emergency surgeries must be performed immediately, even when the patient is unconscious and cannot give consent. Examples include trauma and appendicitis. Life-threatening conditions can occur during labor and delivery which may require emergency surgery. Other services making changes include: Pulmonary Services and Procedures Renown Health today will begin rescheduling patients scheduled for Pulmonary Function Testing, Outpatient bronchoscopy and patients at Thomas S. Dolan Pulmonary Rehabilitation. Patients who are affected by this change are being called by Renown to reschedule their appointments for Monday, April20, 2020 or later. Starbucks at Renown and Renown Dining Options As with many of the Starbucks around the U.S., the Starbucks at Renown Regional Medical Center will shift to a “to-go” model, with no seating available. The cafeterias at Renown Regional Medical Center and South Meadows Medical Center remain open, will temporarily eliminate self-service options and will add more ‘grab and go’ options. Other Renown Services Remain Open Renown Medical Group offices remain open. Planned imaging procedures such as ultrasound, computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRIs), mammograms and non-invasive cardiology testing will continue at Renown hospitals and office locations and will NOT be postponed at this time. Patients confirmed for imaging appointments will be contacted prior to their scheduled visits to identify those who may be at higher risk of COVID-19 infection. Renown has expanded access to Teladoc virtual visits, available to all Hometown Health and Senior Care Plus subscribers. For up-to-date information on Renown’s approach to keeping our community safe, visit our website at https://www.renown.org/covid-19/. About Renown Health Renown Health is a locally governed and locally owned, not-for-profit integrated healthcare network serving northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is one of the region’s largest private employers with a workforce of more than 7,000. It comprises three acute care hospitals, a rehabilitation hospital, the area’s most comprehensive medical group and urgent care network, and the region’s largest and only locally owned not-for-profit insurance company, Hometown Health. Renown has a long tradition and commitment to continually improve the care and the health of our community. For more information, visit renown.org.
Renown Health continues to monitor coronavirus (COVID-19) and ensure constant readiness by working closely with the Washoe County Health Department and staying informed of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) updates. When there is heightened concern around an illness, we implement enhanced infection prevention strategies and ensure we are ready with the appropriate supplies and alternate plans should the need arise. Renown Health providers are educated and prepared to quickly and safely screen, diagnose and care for patients with respiratory illness, including COVID-19. Out of an abundance of caution, Renown Health has implemented the following measures to ensure the safety of patients, staff and community members. Patients with Respiratory Symptoms: If you are experiencing respiratory symptoms, call 775-982-5000 to be directed to the appropriate level of care. This phone screening is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week and is offered free by Renown Health to our community. Additionally, Renown staff are performing respiratory illness screenings at the entrances of all of our Renown hospitals, urgent care and medical group locations to ensure the safety of our patients, staff and community. Limiting Visitation: While we understand the importance of in-hospital patients having friends, family and loved ones by their side, to help protect against flu and other respiratory illnesses, as of Tuesday, March 10, patients at Renown hospitals will not be receiving visitors. If a family member or friend is at a Renown hospital, please telephone them. If there are extenuating circumstances, we will allow one designated visitor per patient through controlled entrances at both hospitals from 4 to 9 p.m. No visitors under the age of 12 will be permitted. These new rules will allow one visitor to stay overnight with laboring mothers, NICU, pediatric and palliative care patients. Approved visitors will be subject to screening before entering by answering a series of questions about any recent symptoms of respiratory or influenza-like illness prior to entering a Renown facility. Access to Renown hospitals (Renown Regional Medical Center and Renown South Meadows Medical Center), is through the main entrances and the emergency room entrances only. Volunteers: For the safety of our volunteers, we have temporarily suspended volunteer operations at Renown until further notice. Events at Renown Locations: To ensure the health and safety of our community, we have cancelled upcoming community events scheduled at Renown and Hometown Health locations. Protecting Yourself: You can protect yourself the same way you would protect against other viruses with a few common-sense practices. Wash your hands thoroughly and often. Make sure you are cleaning between your fingers and under your nails. Use alcohol-based sanitizers when soap and water are not available Use disposable tissues when coughing and sneezing; dispose of carefully and promptly. If tissues are not available, direct your cough or sneeze into the crook of your arm/sleeve Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces. Avoid close contact with anyone who has cold or flu-like symptoms. Avoid shaking hands, especially with those who appear to be ill. Disinfect shared surfaces. Practice social distancing. Stay home when you are sick. If you have fever, cough, gastrointestinal, or respiratory symptoms please call the Free Respiratory Health Line at 775-982-5000. How to Get Accurate and Reliable Information: We continue to advise our community regarding the importance of accurate sources of information, and to provide regular updates. Any decisions and information related to COVID-19 will be shared via official Renown Health communication channels. For up-to-date information on Renown’s approach to keeping our community safe, visit our website at https://wwwenown.org/covid-19.r/. About Renown Health Renown Health is a locally governed and locally owned, not-for-profit integrated healthcare network serving Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is one of the region’s largest private employers with a workforce of more than 7,000. It comprises three acute care hospitals, a rehabilitation hospital, the area’s most comprehensive medical group and urgent care network, and the region’s largest and only locally owned not-for profit insurance company, Hometown Health. Renown has a long tradition and commitment to continually improve the care and the health of our community. For more information, visit renown.org