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Washington’s response to the COVID-19 crisis has been nothing short of amazing. By staying home, you’ve saved lives. Lately though, we’re seeing the consequences of people staying away from health care, including: 

  • Waiting too long to seek care for injuries like broken bones or deep cuts and ending up with serious infections that could have been prevented.  
  • Not seeking care for new or worsening health conditions, such as warning symptoms for heart attacks or strokes.
  • Making themselves more vulnerable to severe COVID-19 symptoms by not managing chronic conditions. 

Washington’s health care providers are united in ensuring the availability and safety of accessing care. We’re available to care for you and your family, whether your concern is physical or emotional. Don’t delay.  

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Hospitals & Clinics are Safe

Care at clinics and hospitals looks different now. That’s because health care teams are taking concrete steps to keep you safe when you seek care, including: 

  • Screen for symptoms and temperature when anyone arrives at a hospital or clinic, often before they even enter the building 
  • Separate people with COVID-like symptoms from others. All hospitalized COVID-19 patients are cared for in special units of the hospitals, away from other patients
  • Distance people from one another with reminders of safe distances and protective barriers in some areas
  • Limit visitors for appointments and patients 
  • Increase the use of masks for staff and visitors
  • Change the waiting room experience, or eliminating the waiting room entirely
  • Increase cleaning of common and high touch items like door handles, elevator buttons, tables, and chairs. Clinics and hospitals always have high standards when it comes to cleaning and keeping germs from spreading. 

To find out which precautions a specific health care provider is taking to make care at their location COVID-safe, give them a call or visit their website. 

What kind of care is available right now?  

Under Gov. Inslee’s current orders, patients have access to most, but not all, health care services. The order does allow for regular clinic visits so you can maintain care for any current or urgent conditions. 

  • Urgent and emergency care is available and safe to access.  Patients with COVID-like symptoms are separated away from others.  
  • Doctor and clinic visits for routine care were never prohibited under the Governor’s order. Contact your provider to find out what in-person and virtual options are available.  
  • Telehealth visits connect you with your health care provider through phone and video conference. This is a good option for routine care, mental health, managing chronic conditions, and having new conditions or symptoms evaluated to determine if you need an in-person visit.  
  • Some surgical and diagnostic procedures are now available. You and your health care provider will need to work together to determine if the procedure is needed urgently enough that a delay would have a detrimental impact on your health. 

While we’re not fully back to normal operations, you shouldn’t delay care for new or worsening symptoms. Part of doing your part means staying healthy and connecting with your health care team if you experience troubling symptoms.

Please do not delay getting the health care you need.  We strongly encourage you to call your health care provider to discuss your concerns. Many issues can be addressed with informed guidance, prescriptions or a tele-medicine appointment.

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As always, if there is a medical or psychiatric emergency, call 911 immediately.

112 Hospitals. One Voice. Hospitals and health systems that serve  every community across state are concerned about the health of Washingtonians. We’ve come together as one voice to ensure you that  clinics and hospitals are still safe, you still have options for accessing medical care,  and your physical and emotional health is still of utmost importance. Need care? Get care. We’re here. 

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Washington State Hospital Association
999 Third Avenue
Suite 1400
Seattle, WA 98104

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206.281.7211 phone
206.283.6122 fax

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