Blount Memorial Hospital is preparing to open tent triage and treatment areas on its main campus to help separate patients exhibiting respiratory illnesses from other hospital and emergency department patients. The tent was set up outside the hospital’s emergency department over the last few days, is on track to open later this week, and will operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Once open, patients who arrive at the hospital seeking emergency treatment for respiratory-related issues will be evaluated and treated inside the tent – just as they would inside the hospital’s emergency department. This will allow patients who arrive for treatment for non-respiratory issues to be physically separated from respiratory patients.
“This is the latest measure in our multi-phase plan to protect our patients, staff and community from the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19),” said Blount Memorial chief medical officer Dr. Harold Naramore. “Tent triage helps protect patients who are coming to the hospital for treatment for medical emergencies such as stroke, heart attack, falls or broken bones by keeping them apart from respiratory patients who may or may not be coming in for treatment for coronavirus symptoms. We want to make sure people coming to Blount Memorial, regardless of the situation, to feel safe in the knowledge that we are doing everything we can to protect them,” he added.