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Juan F. Luis Hospital Identifies COVID-19 Protocols In Place Now

CHRISTIANSTED — From the inception of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Governor Juan J. Luis Hospital said it identified that its internal healthcare workers are the persons on the island of St. Croix that are the most at risk, given that their jobs are to care for the sickest in the community.

Immediate Action Taken by the hospital, according to JFL:

JFL has instituted all appropriate safeguards to keep JFL team members and the St. Croix community safe.

We are working diligently with DOH to complete contact tracing and to test all JFL team members that may have been exposed.

All affected team members remain on home quarantine until cleared through JFL’s internal Employee Health department and DOH.

All JFL Team members remain supported during this time as each team member is a valued member of the JFL family.

All healthcare workers providing direct patient care are expected to wear masks for all patient interactions, to use gloves and proper hand hygiene, and to disinfect all surfaces in between patient consults.

Patients who are symptomatic (a low-grade fever coupled with a cough, respiratory complaints, fatigue, or muscle aches) or exposures (travel to places with viral spread or contact with someone who tested positive) are separated from the rest of the patient population in the Emergency Room and the Intensive Care Unit.

Social distancing is practiced within the waiting area of the Emergency Room (waiting-room chairs are placed six feet apart) and
visitation has been severely restricted; doctors and patients stay six feet apart except during examinations.

Whenever there is an employee who suspects that they may have been exposed, the employee is tested at JFL and a second validation test is taken by the Department of Health; this collaboration continues, as JFL continues to receive patients that are suspected of COVID-19 patients. In the meantime, any person that is positive for COVID-19 is placed in home quarantine.

But not everyone was happy with the steps the Estate Diamond-Ruby hospital has taken since the onset of coronavirus in the territory.

“JFL is a death trap why are we still begging for protective equipment when there is so much free money is available for such,” Xiomara Francis said on Facebook. “From the day those nurses tested positive you all should have tested the entire staff….”

What Can You Do to Help?

With COVID-19 continuing to be a front-and-center issue, health care workers at the Governor Juan F. Luis Hospital & Medical Center are working double time providing comfort and care to those who have COVID-19, screening potential patients and fielding questions from members of the community and their families, while managing the cancellation of schools, elder care and childcare.

JFL asks the community to continue to keep JFL healthcare workers and staff in mind by heeding expert and government-issued safeguards, as the continued safety and well-being of our community and first responders are critical to the success of the territory’s COVID-19 response effort.

This includes washing your hands and practicing physical distancing. Additionally, refrain from trusting or sharing any unvetted health information on social media. Healthcare workers are entitled to the dignity of privacy of their health information as much as any other person in the
community.

If you have a healthcare worker in your life, community members can provide support, even with a simple “How are you doing?” This can go a long way for a healthcare worker who is knee-deep in patient care during the coronavirus pandemic.

Calling for confirmation of Facebook chatter or calling healthcare workers to panic is not helpful for persons who are already under a significant amount of stress during this time, as their lives are already dominated by
coronavirus questions and concerns.

Donations

Anyone who wants to contribute to JFL’s efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic to support patients and frontline healthcare workers may contact rlewis@jflusvi.org using the subject line DONATION.

JFL is asking our community to donate much needed personal protective equipment (PPE) items and supplies, including N-95 masks, cloth masks, procedure/surgical masks, procedure masks with visors, Hand
sanitizer (70% alcohol sanitizer), and Full face shields with foam.

Visitation Restricted

As the COVID-19 environment continues to evolve, JFL continues to take proactive measures to ensure the safety of all patients, staff and the community.

Effective April 19, patient visitors will no longer be permitted until further notice.

There are exceptions made for birthing mothers, NICU patients and parents of pediatric patients.

Assistance by Phone for Billing and Cashier’s Office

For the safety of the community and JFL staff, clients who have billing concerns may call 340-778-6311 and ask for billing; for those clients who are requesting medical records please ask for extension 2883 or e-mail eherbert@jflusvi.org

We are asking for clients to call or e-mail prior to coming in to JFL because your request may be handled over the phone or by e-mail. If your concern cannot be handled over the phone or e-mail, with pre-notification, we will be able to ensure that your in-person visit is efficient.

Join the JFL Team

JFL is hiring qualified healthcare professionals to supplement the capacity of the Governor Juan F. Luis Hospital & Medical Center, on a temporary or permanent basis.

Hazardous pay incentives are available for persons providing direct patient care to persons providing direct patient care to potential COVID-19 patients.

If you are interested in joining our team, please visit the hospital job announcement page at www.jflusvi.org or contact the JFL Human Resources at (340)778-6311, ext. 2818.

For more information on COVID-19, please visit the V.I. Department of Health’s website, doh.vi.gov or text COVID19USVI to 888777.

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