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Local hospitals taking steps to prepare for COVID19

Posted at 11:14 AM, Mar 29, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-29 13:29:01-04

BILLINGS - Corona virus cases nationally have hit 124,000 while deaths have risen above 2,000.

While Montana's numbers are not that big at this time, medical professionals in this area say that they are learning from those who have been hit hard by the virus already.

They also say that they are prepared for if, and when Montana does see an increase in cases.

“I think people in our community need to be reassured that both major hospitals in the Billings area of Saint Vincent in Billings clinic and made significant preparations again being on the slow end of this curve here in Montana has given us time to prepare we have dedicated space in the hospital for patients with this, said Dr. Scott Sears, an internist at St. Vincent Healthcare.

"We have negative airflow rooms. We have enough personal protective equipment at this point to care for people. We have clinics that are staying open we have virtual visits to answer questions without forcing people into a crowded waiting room. We have everything set up so that if there is a surge of patients here we are prepared to take care of them."

Dr. Sears wants to remind people, especially those suffering from chronic conditions, that it is important that they stay in contact with their doctor, even while staying home.

Hospitals are offering patients the option to check in virtually, either in a video call, or just over the phone.