MarinHealth Responds to COVID-19

Clinical leaders at MarinHealth have been closely following the most up-to-date information from the CDC since the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) first became an issue in January 2020. We have been and will continue to be in regular communication with the Marin Public Health as well as our colleagues at UCSF Health, Kaiser, and Novato Community Hospital.

For well over a month, we have also been preparing for the possibility of providing hospital care to patients with COVID-19. This has included conducting drills in both the hospital and our outpatient clinics, reviewing our policies and procedures with respect to treating patients with infectious diseases, and doing our best to secure additional supplies of masks and other protective gear that our physicians and employees use to keep themselves safe.

While COVID-19 is a new virus and has presented our society with significant challenges, MarinHealth and other hospitals alike are well practiced in caring for patients with infectious diseases while keeping caregivers and others safe from transmission. In fact, we do it every day. MarinHealth Medical Center is here for our community and prepared to take care of patients who need hospital care, whether it be for COVID-19 or not.

In addition to our standard infectious disease protocols, we are working closely with Marin Public Health and instituting new measures to screen for and prevent spread of the virus, including:

  • Restricting Visitor Traffic in MarinHealth Medical Center
  • Launching Telemedicine Appointments through MarinHealth Medical Network
    Our clinic staff and providers have been working tirelessly to build a telemedicine program so that a substantial portion of patient visits can be done without bringing patients into the office.
  • Standing up a Treatment Tent in Preparation of a Possible Surge
    While we do not currently have any confirmed COVID-19 patients and we are not currently experiencing a surge of patients at MarinHealth Medical Center, we have decided to prepare in advance. We have installed a tent on the patio outside of the Emergency Department that is available for use should the need arise.
  • Establishing a COVID-19 Testing Center with Marin Public Health
    Community testing for COVID-19 is not currently available at MarinHealth Medical Center. With support from MarinHealth Medical Center, Kaiser, and Novato Community Hospital, Marin Public Health has opened a COVID-19 testing facility to enhance countywide capacity for testing. Individuals referred by their physicians can complete drive-through testing without having to get out of their vehicle. If you think you may have contracted COVID-19, contact your primary care doctor. If needed, they can refer you to the County testing center.

By remaining calm, staying informed and taking precautions recommended by our medical professionals (wash your hands!), we will get through is very stressful and challenging situation. The best way to reduce the risk of becoming infected with a respiratory virus, whether the flu or COVID-19, is to practice good hygiene:

  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially before eating, after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
  • Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer when soap and water is not available
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue or crook of your elbow (not your hands). If you use a tissue, throw it away and wash your hands afterward
  • Avoid touching your face
  • Stay home from work or school if you have a fever or are feeling sick
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe
  • Get your flu shot to protect against flu

MarinHealth encourages members of our community to stay informed and to rely on information from trusted sources, especially the CDC, www.coronavirus.gov.