BASSETT SAYS CORONAVIRUS HAS ARRIVED

BASSETT SAYS

CORONAVIRUS

HAS ARRIVED

Particulars Few, As Streck,

LeCates Cite Confidentiality

By ELIZABETH COOPER • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

Drs. Streck, left, and LeCates at today’s press conference.

COOPERSTOWN – Bassett Healthcare Network has confirmed that its doctors have treated one person with the new coronavirus.

CDC images of coronavurus

Speaking at a press conference today at Bassett Hall, Bassett officials would not say which of the nearly 30 Bassett facilities the patient had been taken to or whether the patient was still inside the facility.

Bassett Hospital President Bill LeCates would say only that Bassett had treated a known case “in both inpatient and outpatient settings.”

It is Bassett policy not to speak about specific patients.

On Thursday, Governor Cuomo reported a confirmed cases in Herkimer and Delaware counties.

News outlets have reported the Herkimer County patient is a woman who returned from traveling in Greece more than two weeks ago. Her family is now under a two-week quarantine at home and she is being treated, according to published reports.

Bassett is sending samples to outside labs for testing, but so far no others have come up positive. LeCates and other Bassett leaders said there is not adequate testing capacity in the region for the need. The state is now contracting with independent labs to perform the tests.

“Last week, there was very limited availability of testing,” LeCates said. “Day by day the availability of testing has increased but not yet to the level to meet with full needs of the community.”

At the press conference, LeCates, along with Bassett President/CEO Bill Streck and Dr. Charles Hyman, infectious diseases specialist, stressed the importance of prevention in the face of the disease.

They declined to say what the network’s capacity for coronavirus patients could be, however, they did say they had done an inventory of “dormant spaces” in existing buildings that could be used for coronavirus patients if necessary.

Their plan was to craft a “triage system” – assessing the relative seriousness of each case – to route patients to locations where their needs could best be served. This would also help control surges in patients at specific facilities.

Decisions will be made based on need and capacity.

They will be informed by a knowledge of what kind of care is available,” LeCates said. “That will help distribute the need for care to match the resources that are available.”

Under the new protocol, individuals calling the 24-hour hotline would first be assessed remotely and, if possible, receive treatment at home. Those who develop more serious symptoms will be taken to facilities within the network.

The trajectory of the illness in the region is still unknown and much can still be done to prevent it from spreading too far.

“Slowing the speed of this infection is the most important step the community can take,” LeCates said. And that has to start right away.

“If we don’t do that well from now, it won’t be effective,” he said.

Hospital officials said they cannot guarantee that infection will not spread from the hospital into the community, but the hope is that the protocols in place will keep that possibility to a minimum.

Healthcare workers will wear protective gear, including masks, respirators or other face coverings and also gowns.

LeCates stressed that the plan is to carefully control the inflow of coronavirus patients into the hospitals.

“We want to assess people with (possible symptoms) outside the hospital,” LeCates said.


11 thoughts on “BASSETT SAYS CORONAVIRUS HAS ARRIVED

  1. Chip Northrup

    We owe it to health care workers to start “social distancing” so we don’t end up at zero distance to the hospital.

  2. PGarcia

    I was told there are people posting photos of a drive thru test area in Herkimer, is this Bassett? When will it open? Are the tests now available in larger quantities? Are the requirements for testing less stringent now that more are possible? There are a lot reports of spread before diagnosis and sometimes even symptoms which tells me testing anyone medically at risk(respiratory patients for example) upon request with or without confirmed exposure, should be allowed, as well as anyone who requests it because of going to department stores etc where there is NO way to know who has or hasn’t been there etc.

  3. Toni Crippen

    We have a right to know what area this is located in. Why the cloak and dagger? Also people you don’t need a test unless you have symptoms so don’t tie up the system unless you do.

  4. Day

    I think not releasing the locations of this happening is putting the community at risk. How will we know if we’ve been exposed to the virus if we don’t know where the person was or if we were in the same places? Currently I was told I cannot get tested for the virus unless I knew someone with a confirmed case. It’s impossible to know if a person has been exposed if we don’t know the details

  5. Karen Anderson

    People, please just assume that the people you come into contact with may be carrier.s It doesn’t really matter where the confirmed cases are. There will be confirmed cases near you soon enough.

  6. Jen

    The primary concern should not be whether it can be carried from the hospital back to the community. Instead, it needs to be determined who the patients had contact with before they developed symptoms and to ask those people to self-quarantine while testing them. That is the earliest way to contain it. Meanwhile, everyone in the area should be practicing social distancing and going out as little as possible.

  7. Marjorie OMara

    I have a runny nose and a 88.2 temperature. Just feel awful. Am 77 years old and no ither health issues

  8. Centralia Heart

    I was in a conversation in Oneonta last week. The person on line in front of me in the pharmacy was saying that she was heading on vacation to mexico in a few days. I said “you might not be able to come back you might want to rethink your trip.” She responded ” I am an American, it is my right to go on vacation.” I did not say anything after that. Then I overheard another person say “If they close schools I am calling an airline and going on vacation.” I really just wanted to scream. Do people just not get it? Do they not realize that they could pick up the virus and bring it back and put towns and older people in jeopardy? Does the government have to take away our right to vacation in order to keep us safe? Very disturbing that folks can be that selfish instead of thinking of the greater good.

  9. Mario Molinaro

    This is in response to the post of “Centralia Heart” which was posted on March 19, 2020. I fully agree that going on vacation overseas is totally irresponsible, showing depraved indifference for the rest of the community by putting masses of people at risk for the Covid 19 Coronavirus. These types of people who claim “I’m an American so I can go on vacation if I want” want to change the American motto from America being the land of the brave and the free, to being the land of the free and stupid. This is not what our Founding Fathers had in mind for America. Ironically, these are the same people who treat cigarette smokers as criminals, as well as being critical of other people’s behaviors that are of little or no consequences to others. It’s time to step up and rectify this type of thinking if America wants to continue to be “The land of the Brave and the Free “.

  10. Michael Serbay

    I think if they have hall of fame weekend they are crazy also letting all star village play at dream park is nuts then we will get con 19 for real all the outsider will be here is money worth it

  11. M. Marra

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    The article mentions patient confidentiality as a Bassett Policy? Well I sure the hell hope so. It’s called HIPAA and it is federal law to not disclose patient details.

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