Coronavirus Latest Updates

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Coronavirus: Need to Know

 

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Maintaining a Safe and Effective Care Environment

A safe and effective care environment is our highest priority, and Westchester Medical Center Health Network (WMCHealth) hospitals and medical practices have undertaken necessary steps to protect our patients and workforce as the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) situation evolves.

On this site, you will find the most up-to-date information on our patient and visitor guidelines, as well as details about testing that is being conducted on some of our hospital campuses, by appointment only. In addition, information is available on how to donate supplies or make a contribution to our health network.

Thank you for your support. 

 


Please call the DOH’s coronavirus hotline at 888.364.3065 or visit Health.NY.Gov for additional information.  You can also visit the CDC.gov for updates and prevention tips.

Westchester County Department of Health Standing Commissioner's Order for Isolation Protocol of Lab Confirmed 2019-Novel Coronavirus

Our Plans for Care

All WMCHealth hospitals and medical practices have long-standing and the most up-to-date protocols in place to respond to infectious diseases. These protocols include, but are not limited to:

  • Strict adherence to care guidelines
  • Protective attire
  • The use of negative-pressure environments to contain airborne pathogens.
  • We routinely train our staff on these protocols and protocol adherence is monitored by infection prevention specialists.

As an added safety precaution, multilingual signs are present at key hospital entry points asking patients and visitors to share their potential for exposures, such as recent travel, symptoms and local exposure.

If a patient arrives at a WMCHealth member hospital or medical practice with a suspicion of COVID-19 exposure or if key symptoms are present, the patient will be masked and escorted to an isolated and contained area for additional evaluation and care in cooperation with public health agencies, such as the New York State Department of Health (DOH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Our Commitment

WMCHealth is committed to providing a safe and comfortable care environment for patients, their families and our staff at all of our member hospitals and medical practices throughout the Hudson Valley. Our care specialists are working collaboratively with public health agencies and closely monitoring COVID-19 developments. Please call the DOH’s coronavirus hotline at 888.364.3065 or visit Health.NY.Gov or CDC.gov for additional information and prevention tips.

Mental Health Hotline:  Call 914.216.7733

The COVID-19 anxiety and research hotline is staffed by trained medical personnel that are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to provide free confidential telephone counseling services for members of the community and staff experiencing anxiety and depression as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Updated: January 8, 2021


Please call the DOH’s coronavirus hotline at 888.364.3065 or visit Health.NY.Gov for additional information.  You can also visit the CDC.gov for updates and prevention tips. 

Visitation

Effective March 10, 2022, visitation at Westchester Medical Center and Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital is as follows: 

  • Visiting hours are 11 a.m. - 9 p.m. 
  • There will be no limit to the number of visitors throughout the day; however, only two (2) people may visit at a time.
  • Pediatric patients, age 22 years and under, are allowed four (4) Designated Support People (DSP). Two (2) DSPs can visit together at any given time, 24 hours per day.
  • Labor and delivery patients are allowed two (2) DSPs, including a doula if requested, 24 hours per day, throughout labor, delivery and the postpartum period, including recovery, until discharge to home. The DSP can be the patient’s spouse, partner, sibling, parent, or other persons of their choice.
  • Accompaniment to the Emergency Department is allowed. In the event of higher than normal volume we may need to restrict access in the waiting room to patients only.
  • All patients undergoing same-day procedures may be accompanied to the facility by two (2) DSPs and those DSPs may remain in a hospital designated waiting area until the patient is discharged.
  • Behavioral Health units have visitation guidelines which are provided to patients and families upon admission.
  • In compliance with NYS DOH requirements, visitors must be at least 12 years of age and if under 18 must be accompanied by an adult. All such visitors must have proof of vaccination or testing, as above. Visitors between five and 11 years of age with proof of full vaccination, or recent negative COVID test (as above) may be granted exceptions.
  • Patients with extenuating circumstances will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. These requests and other related concerns can be directed to Patient Experience at 914.493.8877

Upon entry to the facility, DSPs will be screened for COVID-19 symptoms and required to provide proof of full vaccination for COVID-19, or a negative COVID-19 molecular or PCR test collected within five days prior to each visit. People are considered fully vaccinated two weeks after they have received the second dose in a two-dose series (Pfizer or Moderna), or two weeks after they have received a single-dose vaccine (Janssen/Johnson & Johnson). Boosters are recommended to those who are eligible. For those presenting evidence of a negative test, only ‘molecular’ or ‘PCR’ tests will be accepted. Antigen tests will not be accepted. 

Vaccination and Testing Appointments

DSPs who wish to make an appointment for vaccination or COVID-19 PCR testing may call our COVID-19 Call Center at 914.202.4530.

Infection Control

All hospital, state and federal guidelines regarding infection control practices must be followed. 

DSPs are required to wear facemasks, as well as any other personal protective equipment deemed necessary by the clinical team, and should wash hands frequently. DSPs who fail to follow these infection control protocols will be asked to leave the facility.

Once in the facility, DSPs must limit travel within the hospital to only pathways directly to and from the patient’s room. Visits to locations including the Caregiver Center, Walgreens, Gift Shops, Panera Cafes and Marketplace Café must be made prior to going to the patient’s room. 

DSPs must remain in the patient’s room throughout the visit, except when directed to leave by hospital staff during procedures or circumstances for which visitors are usually asked to leave, or to use the restroom, and must be appropriately distanced from any other patients or staff.  

Emergency Department Only

For patients presenting for immediate, emergency care, visitors who accompany them may be permitted to remain with them for the initial hospitalization period (in most cases no longer than the first day) without proof of vaccination or a negative test result.  All subsequent visits more than one day after the acute event will require proof of vaccination or negative test result.

Communication Devices

For patients using personal devices for communication with family and friends: All WMCHealth patients must adhere to policies regarding patient photography and recording or videotaping. Any live video streaming between patients and family/friends must be done with approval by the patient and WMCHealth, be time limited, should not include clinical procedures or staff and should not interfere with WMCHealth clinical treatment or operations. View our complete COVID-19 response, including information on testing, visitation, donations and services.


Testing

WMCHealth offers both COVID-19 diagnostic and antibody testing at sites in Valhalla, Poughkeepsie, Kingston and Margaretville

Covid testing facility located at 100 Woods Road, Valhalla, NY

COVID-19 testing facility located at 100 Woods Road, Valhalla, NY.

 

Treatment

Suspension of New Referrals for Monoclonal Antibody Treatment for COVID-19

December 22, 2021

Effective immediately, WMCHealth Network will not accept new referrals for the COVID-19 monoclonal antibody (mAb) treatment. The currently available mAbs are not effective against the predominant SARS-Cov-2 variant, Omicron.

According to the most recent CDC estimates, the Omicron variant now accounts for 92% of new COVID-19 cases in our region.  Studies conducted by the FDA and others have demonstrated that the currently available monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) Bamlanivimab/etesevimab and Casirivimab/imdevimab are ineffective against the Omicron variant.

The mAb Sotrovimab is expected to be effective against the Omicron variant; however, national supplies and New York State allocations are extremely limited.  Once Sotrovimab availability improves, we will resume referrals for mAb therapy.

Prevention remains the method of protection against COVID-19. We strongly recommend that all eligible people age 5 years and over receive COVID-19 vaccine and booster doses, and mask and test when appropriate.

Please contact your primary care provider if you have any questions about COVID-19 prevention or treatment.

We remain committed to providing optimal care to patients in our region and will update this site as soon as more information is available.

Updated: December 22, 2021


WMCHealth Vaccine Information

Westchester Medical Center is serving as the coordinator for the Hudson Valley Region Hub of New York State’s Regional Vaccine Network.

 

Volunteer to Support COVID-19 Vaccination

How To Volunteer

Thank you for your interest.

We are grateful for the more than 2,000 volunteers that have supported the vaccination sites across the region. At this time we are no longer recruiting vaccination volunteers for the sites managed by WMCHealth. 

If you would like to learn more about volunteering at WMCHealth, please visit our Volunteer Page.

Updated: July 16, 2021


WMCHealth Post-COVID-19 Recovery Program

Post-COVID-19 Care for Ongoing Recovery

The Tri-State area has been one of the hardest hit in the nation during the COVID-19 pandemic. Today, an increasing number of people who became ill from the coronavirus continue to deal with issues surrounding their physical, mental and emotional health and quality of life. Sometimes referred to as “post-Covid syndrome” this is a very real health issue. And, it is treatable.

Request an Appointment | Call 1.833.329.0095

Updated: January 6, 2021


Please call the DOH’s coronavirus hotline at 888.364.3065 or visit Health.NY.Gov for additional information.  You can also visit the CDC.gov for updates and prevention tips.

Support Our WMCHealth Heroes

Our WMCHealth Heroes are working diligently to serve and protect our patients and workforce as the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) evolves.

Help support our efforts to care for all patients by making a gift to your local hospital.

To Donate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

We are appreciative of community members who have connected us to legitimate resources for the following:

  • N95 masks
  • Surgical masks
  • Face shields or goggles
  • Fluid resistant isolation gowns
  • Non-latex (nitrile) gloves

We ask that no one deliver materials directly to our hospitals.

If you are aware of such resources in the community or have materials to donate, please contact us at supplies@wmchealth.org

Updated: January 6, 2021