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Seneca prepares for COVID-19

Seneca Healthcare District is preparing for COVID-19. As of this writing there had been no confirmed cases in Plumas County.

“We worked with, and are continuing to work with, Plumas District Hospital and Eastern Plumas District Hospital regarding all information inquiries to ensure we are all presenting a cohesive and consistent message to our communities,” said Steve Boline, the acting administrator of the healthcare district.

Boline responded to several questions posed by Chester Progressive staff regarding preparations and capacity.

Q. What sort of precautions are currently being made for the potential advent of COVID-19 in the Lake Almanor Basin, especially considering the large population of those “at risk” per CDC in our community? Who is leading this plan?

A. Seneca Healthcare District is working closely with Plumas County Public Health Agency (PCPHA), California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to coordinate a response and contain the spread of the virus if it arrives in our community.

Plumas County Public Health Agency is leading the planning and response in coordination with recommendations from CDPH and CDC. PCPHA issued guidance for our high risk populations on March 16.

Q. How many total hospital beds are there at Seneca?

A. Seneca has 10 Licensed Acute Care and 16 Licensed Skilled Nursing Beds.

Q. How many isolation rooms are at Seneca?

A. Seneca has one Isolation room with double door protection. Not a negative pressure room.

Q. What is the surge capacity at Seneca?

A. Surge capacity can vary based on the situation and variances allowed by state regulations. Plans for surge will be implemented on an as needed basis with flexibility for additional surge if the situation requires.

Q. What are the contingency plans for staff exposure?

A. We are following the CDC recommendations for Potential Exposure in a Healthcare Setting to Patients with Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19).

Q. Does Seneca have enough personal protection equipment for staff? (masks, gloves, etc.)

A. At this time, Seneca has an adequate amount of personal protective equipment for staff.

Q. How is Seneca handling the protocol for isolating patients who possibly have COVID-19?

A. We are adhering to our normal isolation practices and following CDC guidelines.

Q. Do you have the ability to test for COVID-19 at Seneca and what is the estimated time to receive results?

A. Testing takes place at the discretion of the provider. Testing can be done at Seneca, but tests are sent to the contracted reference lab in Reno. Test results are normally available in 72-96 hours.

Q. What are you advising people to do if they aren’t sure if it’s a cold/flu or COVID-19 before arriving at a clinic or ER?

A. Stay home if they are not acutely ill and do not require immediate medical attention. Call ahead and let us know they are coming if they feel they need to be seen.

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