Open Accessibility Menu

Coronavirus Update and Health System Preparations - 4/23

Coronavirus Update and Health System Preparations - 4/23

Testing and Confirmed Cases
To protect patient privacy, we have established a minimum threshold of five for reporting numbers of inpatients with laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19.

DCH internal counts as of 11:20 a.m. on 4/23/20:

  • 30 inpatients are being treated for COVID-19.

  • 12 inpatients who are positive for COVID-19 are being treated in the ICU.

  • Seven inpatients who are positive for COVID-19 are on ventilators.

  • 193 (cumulative) have tested positive for COVID-19 including individuals from the ED, triage tent and inpatient. These individuals are not necessarily in the hospital.

  • 3,314 (cumulative) have tested negative at DCH sites.


As a reminder, in the dashboard a PUI is a “person under investigation” which means the individual has COVID-19 symptoms but a test result has not yet come back.

The percentage of positives among those who have been tested also continues to climb but it has leveled off a bit.


Screening Process Keeps Patients Safe at SpineCare
The SpineCare Center patients are often in pain, and they want to feel relief fast. So encountering a new COVID-19 check-in process can make them feel extra anxious and scared. Following is a glimpse inside the SpineCare Center’s process in an effort to ease some of the anxiety related to visiting a DCH clinic.

temp checker Brooke Lucas, right, a radiographer at The SpineCare Center, places an armband after checking the temperature of a fellow employee.

Like every DCH hospital and clinic, SpineCare’s COVID-19 process aims to keep everyone safe, from patients to staff, said Director Melissa Pate.

The center calls patients the day before their appointment to ask them screening questions. They are given a SpineCare phone number to call just before they arrive on appointment day. This helps the center control the number of patients in the waiting room, enabling a safe distance between them. And only one person can enter per party – relatives or other caregivers must wait in their cars.

Just inside the center, patients stop at a check-in station to answer screening questions again, have their temperature taken, and receive a mask and colored armband to indicate they have been screened. The receptionist directs them where to sit in the waiting room to maintain a 6-foot distance. Hand sanitizer is also readily available for patients and staff.

“We have such a great team, and I could not be more proud of their resiliency,” Pate said, noting that the process changes brought by the virus have been hard on all.

She gives Dr. Wesley Spruill, SpineCare’s medical director, credit for being an early adopter of safe practices. “Dr. Spruill was on top of this very early on. He wanted to be certain that we ensured our patients’ safety [during the COVID-19 outbreak],” Pate said.