Lafayette General talks readiness over coronavirus


LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) — Fears are mounting about the coronavirus, especially because of the cases in the U.S.

Lafayette General held a news conference today to reassure the public that the hospital is prepared. Lafayette General Health says in addition to letting the general public know where they stand in terms of being prepared, they also want the public to feel confident they have the resources to handle an emergency.

“Symptoms in general a similar to any respiratory viruses coughing fever, upper respiratory infection fatigue,” said infectious disease specialist Dr. Garabet Akoglanian.

Lafayette General Health officials say they’ve taken measures to ensure they’re prepared should there be an influx of infectious disease cases locally.

“So we’re confident and we want the community to feel confident that we do have a process in place to protect them and our health care workers,” said Vice-President of Quality and Risk Management Joan Stokes.

Lafayette General says they’ve also programmed their electronic health records to ask if a patient has traveled to an affected area. A positive response triggers yet another strategy.

“Right now, we have included China, Japan, Iran, Italy, and South Korea,” said Stokes.

In terms of protective gear and equipment for employees, Lafayette General officials say they are 100 percent fully allocated.

“If those supplies become compromised at any time, we have a process in place to get more, or we will make a decision on usage based on available,” said Stokes. “We don’t have concerns about that at this time and we don’t want the community to worry about that.”

The chief medical officer for Lafayette General Health says it’s a matter of knowing the symptoms and following general preventive measures.

“Staying inside when you are sick quarantining yourself away from other people where you’re not feeling well, washing your hands and not touching your face,” said Chief Medical Officer Dr. Amanda Louge.

Also, after local measures have been taken, the hospital says the Office of Public Health will be notified.

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