Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Mary Greeley Medical Center has taken a number of steps in response to growing concerns about novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

If you have specific questions about COVID-19, both the Iowa Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have put out comprehensive information regarding symptoms, treatment, cases in the U.S. and much more.

COVID-19 Update

An update regarding COVID-19 is being supplied for Mary Greeley employees. The update includes the number of confirmed cases, procedural changes affecting MGMC staff and happenings within the state as a whole. Please take the time to read this and stay informed.

COVID-19 Updates [YAMMER]

Current Visitor Policy

Effective - March 7, 2022

Mary Greeley recommends admitted patients have only two visitors at a time. This helps ensure the safety of patients, visitors, and staff by allowing adequate space for physical distancing. We reserve the right to ask people to leave the hospital if the number of visitors in a patient room or in a waiting area causes concern. 

Adult same day surgical and clinic visit patients are allowed one visitor/support person. Pediatric same day surgical and clinic visit patients are allowed two visitors/support persons.

COVID-positive patients are allowed one visitor at a time.

Anyone visiting a Behavioral Health patient must be scheduled in advance.

All visitors must:

  • Wear a mask.
  • Complete screening process at entrance.
  • Be free from COVID symptoms, including fever, sore throat, cough, diarrhea, vomiting and runny nose.
  • Stay in the patient room except for bathroom breaks and visits to cafeteria or coffee shop.

Anyone visiting a COVID-positive patient must:

  • Wear a hospital-issued badge provided at main entrance screening desk. 
  • Attend educational briefing on proper use of PPE.
  • Wear PPE while visiting patient.
Visitors & Staff will be screened at entrances.

Visitation Rights for Patients with Disabilities 

Patients with disabilities may designate at least one support person to accompany them throughout their visit or stay at Mary Greeley Medical Center. Patients with disabilities may have a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activity, and may include, but not be limited to, altered mental status; physical, intellectual or cognitive disability; communication barriers; or behavioral health concern. 

COVID FAQ: Employee COVID-19 Testing

If you are concerned about symptoms:

If you are concerned about COVID-19 symptoms, do not report to work and please call your Primary Care Provider for guidance. Testing for COVID-19 will be ordered and performed at the clinic location (not at MGMC). COVID-19 tests are covered at no cost by Mary Greeley’s medical plan and by most other private insurance plans.

Coronavirus symptoms may include:

  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

Or at least 2 of these symptoms:

  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny hose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Fever of 100.4° F or greater
  • Chills

If you have had an exposure to someone with COVID-19

CDC defines an exposure as being within 6 feet of an individual with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 for greater than 15 minutes without proper PPE (i.e. no facemask or N95).

If you feel that you were around a COVID positive individual for longer than 15 minutes, within 6ft AND without wearing at least a face mask, please read the 2 scenarios below:

1. If you do NOT have symptoms:

You should return to work and monitor symptoms daily.

  • You must wear a mask and face shield and practice appropriate physical distancing when you cannot wear a mask/shield (while eating or drinking). Practice good hand hygiene and socialize in small groups for short periods of times.
  • If you would like tested, we encourage you to follow-up with your Primary Care Provider.

2. If you DO have symptoms:

  • Notify your supervisor and stay home.
  • Call your primary care provider for additional guidance.
  • All testing (including the order and obtaining the test) will occur in the clinic setting

3. If you have previously tested positive for COVID-19 within the past 3 months:

  • You do not need to be tested again for COVID-19
  • Please follow our “Recommendations and Work Restrictions for Common Infectious Diseases” policy (found within Policy Medical)

If you have tested positive for COVID-19

Call your supervisor and Employee Health.

Stay home and isolate until at least 10 days have passed since your symptoms first appeared AND you have been fever-free for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medication AND other symptoms have improved.

If you have tested negative for COVID-19

Call your supervisor and Employee Health.

If you were tested because of a symptoms AND a confirmed exposures (as defined by CDC) and your test was negative, you will need to be retested after 24 hours. If you receive two negative tests, you may return to work if you are fever free. 

If you were tested because of a confirmed exposure (as defined by CDC) but did not have symptoms, and test result was negative, may return to work right away.

If you were tested because of COVID-like symptoms and you tested negative, you can return to work when you have been fever free for 24-hours (please see the “Recommendations and Work Restrictions for Common Infectious Diseases” policy for further guidance).

If you tested for other reasons than COVID-19 symptoms or confirmed exposure you can remain at work (as long as our “Recommendations and Work Restrictions for Common Infectious Diseases” policy is followed).

IDPH COVID-19 Vaccine FAQ

What is the recommendation for receiving influenza vaccine this fall/winter with the current COVID-19 pandemic?

It is likely flu viruses and the virus causing COVID-19 will both be circulating. The CDC recommends everyone > 6 months receive a yearly flu vaccine. During the COVID-19 pandemic, reducing the overall burden of respiratory illnesses is especially important to protect vulnerable populations at risk for severe illness, the healthcare system, and other critical infrastructure. Healthcare providers should use every opportunity to administer influenza vaccines to all eligible persons.

Visitor & Staff Screening

We are currently screening staff and visitors as they enter the hospital’s facilities.

Staff will be asked screening questions (subject to change) at entrances. Based on response to screening questions, employee may be asked to return home and contact their provider, supervisor and Employee Health.

Asymptomatic employees who have been exposed to a COVID-19 individual:

  1. Can report to work.
  2. Notify Employee Health by email EmpHealth@mgmc.com or phone 515-239-2639 that they meet the criteria above.
  3. If at any time, the employee develops symptoms, do not report to work and contact your supervisor, provider and Employee Health.

Please be aware that all doors to the main campus will be locked and badge-access will be temporarily suspended on all doors except:

  • Emergency Department (Open 24/7)
  • Main Lobby Entrance (5am-8pm)
  • Skywalk (Open 5am-7pm, M-F)
  • West Parking Lot – EE Badge access only (24/7)
  • North Addition/Bliss Entrance (Open 7am – 6pm, M-F)
  • McFarland/MGMC Tunnel (Open 6am – 6pm, M-F)
  • Loading Dock - Vendors Only (Open 5am-7pm, M-F)

Staff should plan to get to work a little earlier to ensure they can get through screening and clock-in on time.

We know this will be an inconvenience for staff. Everyone is doing great work during this complicated time, and we appreciate your patience, understanding and commitment to safety.

Doctors on Demand - Telehealth Option

Through our benefit plan, employees now have access to Doctors on Demand - a service that provides virtual doctor's visits through a smartphone or tablet. Currently there is a $20 copay. (Note: Primary Care Physicians in the domestic or Wellmark Blue Choice network are $30 for telehealth, Non-primary care physicians are $40 for telehealth.)

Employees can sign up by clicking here and should have their insurance card handy when doing so.

(Note: this option may work for employees with other insurance too. Those employees will need to try their card numbers to see if they are accepted).

Valet Temporarily Closed

We have temporarily suspended valet parking. This decision was made to help ensure patient, visitor and staff safety during the COVID-19 crisis. People who come to the medical center will need to self-park in the parking ramp.

Response Team

An emergency response team is meeting regularly to ensure proper planning is in place and respond to any new developments. Dr. Daniel Fulton, McFarland Clinic infectious disease specialist, is doing presentations on the virus for medical center and clinic staff.

Medical Center Staff

The health and safety of our staff is vital to the health and safety of our community. and many of you are trained in prevention measures when treating patients who have potentially infectious conditions. We are currently using special signage on patient rooms when investigating a potential or confirmed case of an infectious disease. This signage alerts everyone – nursing, dietary, environmental services – of prevention measures that should be taken before entering the room.

Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) & Other Partners

Mary Greeley Medical Center provides Story County Public Health services and is working closely with IDPH on the response to the coronavirus. If we are investigating a potential COVID-19 case, we will work with IDPH to complete a thorough clinical assessment, determine whether lab specimens are to be collected, and the need for further monitoring or self-quarantine. We are also in contact, as needed, with officials from Ames, Story County, the local school district and Iowa State University.