Phoebe returns to Covid-19 sensitive policies

Rise in cases leads to resumption of tighter visitation and masking requirements
Phoebe 1
(L-R) Dr. Sandy Duke, Atrium Health Navicent Chief Clinical Officer; Missy Upshaw, Atrium Health Navicent Pediatric & Women’s Service Line Director; Dr. Mitch Rodriguez, Atrium Health Navicent Business Development Officer; Deb Block, Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital Women’s & Children’s Services Director; Dr. Edward Clark, Atrium Health Navicent Chairman of Pediatrics; Dr. Grace Davis, Phoebe Medical Director of Pediatrics; Joe Austin, Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital CEO; Dr. Kathy Hudson, Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital Chief Medical Officer; Dr. Steve Kitchen, former Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital Chief Medical Officer.

ALBANY, GA –  As of Wednesday morning, these were Phoebe’s COVID-19 numbers:

  • Total COVID-19 Patients in Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital – 31
  • Total COVID-19 Patients in Phoebe Sumter Medical Center – 4
  • Total COVID-19 Patients in Phoebe Worth Medical Center – 2
  • Total Inpatients Recovered – 4,336
  • Total Positive Deaths from Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital – 461
  • Total Positive Deaths from Phoebe Sumter – 125
  • Total Positive Deaths from Phoebe Worth – 1
  • Total Vaccines Administered – 80,842

Recent increases in COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations in our region are leading to new safety guidelines at all Phoebe facilities.

“Throughout the pandemic, our top priority has been the safety of our patients, visitors and employees.  Based on changing conditions, we have updated our visitation and masking rules multiple times, and we feel it is now necessary to do so again,” said Scott Steiner, Phoebe Putney Health System President & CEO.

Beginning Thursday, July 14, only one visitor at a time will be allowed with each patient.  Exceptions and other details of the visitation rules are available at phoebehealth.com/coronavirus.

Also beginning Thursday, visitors and employees at all Phoebe locations will be required to double mask, wearing a surgical mask covered by a well-fitting cloth mask.  “We were able to ease our double mask requirement during the recent lull in COVID transmission, but infections and hospitalizations have increased significantly over the last few weeks,” said Dianna Grant, MD, Phoebe Putney Health System Chief Medical Officer.  “The current dominant strain of COVID is the most immune-evasive to date, and we need to take extra steps to avoid infection.  The science is clear:  double-masking offers much better protection than a single mask, and it is a simple way to reduce your risk,” Dr. Grant added.

Dr. Grant also encourages everyone to stay up to date on their vaccines by getting a booster when they are eligible, practicing social distancing, washing their hands often and wearing a mask in public, indoor settings.  “Many of us have let our guard down and stopped practicing some of these simple actions.  The truth is, they really work, and during a time of increasing COVID activity, we need to get back in the habit of taking these precautions,” Dr. Grant said.

Last month, COVID vaccines were approved for children as young as six months of age.  Phoebe recommends, and is now offering, those pediatric vaccines for babies and young children.  “Research shows the vaccines are safe for children.  If parents have any questions or concerns, they should talk to their family pediatrician.  We also encourage everyone who is eligible to get vaccinated or boosted to do so,” Dr. Grant said.

To schedule a vaccination appointment at a Phoebe clinic, call 229-312-MYMD.