Coronavirus updates from Alliance partners

St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center

Cohort Units

St. Joseph’s has opened two cohort units to treat patients who are under investigation or confirmed to have COVID-19. Neuro ICU and T5 will serve as cohort units. By placing COVID-19 patients in the same units, the hospital can expedite care, conserve PPE, and help develop an expertise for treating these vulnerable patients.

TB Testing Suspended

TB testing for employees has been suspended until further notice to focus resources on COVID-19. When TB testing resumes, information will be shared.

Badging and Entrances

With hospital entrances becoming more restrictive, employees are required to wear their badge. The following entrances are currently open:

  • Main Entrance is open 24/7.
  • The Marley Lobby Entrance is open 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. daily.
  • The 3rd Avenue Bridge is open 5 a.m. to 9 p.m. From 9 p.m. to 5 a.m., the bridge is open via badge access.
  • The Mother of Mercy Lobby (also known as the Teddy Bear Lobby, Thomas Lobby, and Mother/Baby Lobby) are open 24/7.
  • The entrance on the east side of the Neuroscience Tower that’s south of the ED is accessible via badge access.

If a shelter in place order is instituted, employees may need to show their badges to authorities.

Statewide COVID-19 Hotline

Arizona has launched a new statewide COVID-19 hotline—211—to help address questions and comments from the community. The hotline is administered by 2-1-1 Arizona and the Crisis Response Network and offers assistance in English and Spanish.

Valleywise Health

Current COVID-19 Cases at Valleywise Health

  • Confirmed positive: 2 (VHMC), 4 (Outpatient - hospitalization not required)
  • Presumed positive: 1 (VHMC)
  • Persons Under Investigation: 8 (VHMC), 5 (Behavioral Health)

In-House Testing

In-house testing for COVID-19, which started Monday, March 23, has already proven effective in helping identify patients’ test results and offer appropriate treatment. As of yesterday, 15 patients were ruled out for having COVID-19 and transferred to designated areas. This also helps conserve personal protective equipment (PPE).

Incident Decision Units (IDU)

Peds Acute at Valleywise Health Medical Center will transition into IDU 2 and is scheduled to go live on Wednesday, March 25. Leann Hardin has been named the Nurse Leader for all IDUs at Valleywise Health Medical Center.

Virtual Visits

Forty virtual visits were successfully completed on Monday, March 23. AHCCCS has issued new guidance to allow healthcare providers to provide care virtually by either video chat or telephone. The existing traditional visit codes may be used for this purpose with a new modifier.

Employee Testing

Seven employees were tested Monday, March 23 at the tented testing site on the east side of the Education Pavilion. Four employees were tested Tuesday morning, March 24, and seven additional appointments have been scheduled. Appointments are between 10 am. – 4 p.m. As a reminder, employees who have been exposed to a confirmed COVID-19 patient and are symptomatic will need to call ahead to Employee Health and Wellness and make an appointment.

Employee Wellness

The Optum Emotional Support Help Line at 1-866-342-6892 is free of charge and available to anyone and can be shared with family and friends. Caring professionals will connect people to resources. It is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

  • Aetna:  EAP open to all at 1-833-327-2386
  • LifeCare: EAP open to all at 877-399-8235
  • Cigna:  24-hour toll-free help line for all. Contact EAP at 1-866-912-1687