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Clay County health leaders assure residents hospitals are safe

On Wednesday, Clay County health leaders came together at the Clay Chamber of Commerce to announce area hospitals are amplifying infection prevention practices on top of what they normally do.
On Wednesday, Clay County health leaders came together at the Clay Chamber of Commerce to announce area hospitals are amplifying infection prevention practices on top of what they normally do. (WJXT)

FLEMING ISLAND, Fla. – Doctors are worried that patients are avoiding hospitals because they think that only people with COVID-19 can be treated or that they will be at risk for contracting the coronavirus. But physicians say, even during a pandemic, it is safe to go to the hospital to be treated for a medical condition

On Wednesday, Clay County health leaders came together at the Clay Chamber of Commerce to announce area hospitals are amplifying infection prevention practices on top of what they normally do.

Hospitals are screening everyone that comes into the building, making sure everyone is wearing masks, doing temperature checks and social distancing. Universal precautions have been put into place, and hospitals are following best practices for cleaning and sterilizing the facilities.

Lisa Valentine, chief executive officer of Orange Park Medical Center, said, in its emergency room, there’s a 30% to 40% decline in patients, while less than 2% of their patients have signs and symptoms of the coronavirus.

The message from Clay County health leaders: Do not delay when you are showing symptoms out of the ordinary and seek care when you need it.

“Those signs of heart attack, stroke and other acute illnesses are not to be ignored. The sooner you receive care, the better the outcome,” Valentine said. “We want you to be assured that we are ready and care for you. It’s our privilege to serve this community.”

Clay County health leaders said delaying or avoiding care may be costing additional lives and worsening conditions that could be treated.

Make sure if you are feeling irregular symptoms of your health, go get the care you need. The hospitals are ready to treat you.


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