Monday, April 6, 2020

A Letter from HDMC CEO Karen Faulis to the MB Communities.

A Letter from Hi-Desert Medical Center CEO Karen Faulis to the Morongo Basin Communities.

Hi-Desert Medical Center stands united in serving the community and in facing new challenges due to COVID-19. Like you, every one of our physicians and staff members has been impacted by this pandemic, and we have made swift changes to ensure we’re meeting all public health safety measures. I am proud to be the CEO of such a caring and dedicated team.

We want you to know that we are here for you, ready to provide care in every way. We are working closely with the Morongo Basin Healthcare District, San Bernardino County Department of Public Health, and the California Department of Public Health, following guidance issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), to respond to any potential COVID-19 cases that may present at our hospital. We routinely treat infectious diseases and we have strong infection control policies, procedures, and systems in place to screen and treat patients.  We have taken the appropriate steps, and we have trained professionals and the necessary equipment to react accordingly.  We can safely and appropriately care for our patients with the necessary supplies and equipment.

Even as some aspects of care may temporarily change, you can count on Hi-Desert Medical Center to be here for you and your loved ones.  Although there might be some modifications, our emergency room and staff are here 24/7 for medical care, all urgent and emergency care needs, and for COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 related issues.  You’ll receive uninterrupted care for chronic medical conditions, urgent surgical needs, maternal care, and other medical issues that require inpatient care.

The patient care environment has changed with increased safety precautions, which is why we have temporarily suspended patient visits (with limited exceptions) to the hospital and Continuing Care Center.  We realize that family and friends are imperative to the recovery process and we encourage continuous connection with patients via virtual visits on FaceTime, Skype and other applications.  Know that our staff is providing care and comfort to our patients as they would for their own families.  

We have strategies in place to add significant capacity to our hospital should the need arise.  Our surge plans including adding beds in our recovery room and pre-op areas, converting space in our front lobby and Helen Gray Education Center, and erecting an outdoor tent to accommodate increased inpatient and ED volume.  

The health of our physicians and staff on the front lines is also crucial to our success in fighting the surge of patients we anticipate.  We have dedicated staff screening patients who are entering our facility and have taken measures to ensure all physicians and employees are screened.

As we navigate the effects of COVID-19, we expect more changes and challenges ahead. The support and generosity of the communities we serve has been heartwarming and uplifting to our staff.  We appreciate the donations of medical supplies and other offers of support.

We encourage our communities to stay safe at home and heed the direction of public health officials.  We are here for our patients and are ready to serve those who need our help in the coming weeks and months.

Karen Faulis
Hi-Desert Medical Center