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Saint Francis to Resume Surgeries with COVID Testing

Saint Francis Medical Center - Front exterior view

Saint Francis Medical Center will resume elective surgeries and procedures on Monday, April 27.

“The ability to perform non-emergent, elective surgeries is encouraging news for our Healthcare System as well as the communities we are called to serve,” says Dr. Maryann Reese, president and chief executive officer at Saint Francis Healthcare System.

Saint Francis is following all Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) guidelines for resuming elective surgeries.

In an effort to protect patients and staff, Saint Francis continues to screen all who enter the Medical Center and clinics for symptoms and risk factors of COVID-19; ensures all who enter, including patients, are wearing a mask; follows all appropriate precautions as recommended by the CDC; and limits visitors.

All surgical and procedural patients will be tested for COVID-19 prior to their scheduled surgery or procedure. For patients who require an overnight stay at the Medical Center, one visitor will be permitted. The visitor will be tested prior to the patient’s scheduled surgery.

“We are taking a step-wise approach to resuming surgeries which will allow us to continually monitor the COVID-19 situation while simultaneously serving the healthcare needs of our patients,” Reese says. “We believe the processes we have put in place will safeguard our patients, our providers and our colleagues.”

On Friday, April 24, Saint Francis Healthcare System will offer rapid molecular testing for COVID-19.

Molecular tests are used to detect a viral infection, such as COVID-19. Cepheid, the molecular diagnostic vendor used at Saint Francis, has been granted Emergency Use Authorization by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for COVID-19 rapid diagnostic testing. The GeneXpert analyzer at Saint Francis is configured to run 12 tests at a time with results available in minutes.

“Our laboratory team has the capability to process more than 200 tests per day,” says Kim Matthews, Director of Laboratory Services at Saint Francis. “We are able to process tests within our Saint Francis lab quickly and efficiently, giving our patients added peace of mind.”

To date, Saint Francis has performed 993 tests, 75 of which have been positive.

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