With the community’s help, Penn Highlands prepares for COVID-19

With the confirmation of a COVID -19 case in Clearfield County, Penn Highlands Healthcare held a teleconference to assure the public it was making the necessary preparations to be ready of the that number increases.

Mark Norman, Chief Operating Officer for Penn Highlands, began his statement with a thank you to the employees and physicians at the Penn Highlands facilities for their efforts during the crises.

“Everyone has really come together to help manage this situation,” he said.

Norman also praised the communities served by Penn Highlands for their willingness to help.

“The communities of Central Pennsylvania are very resilient; we’re a very resilient health system; and together we will make it through this period.”

Norman added that the DuBois Area School District responded to the recent request to the communities for supplies by donating 400 N95 masks, 4600 surgical masks, 250 procedure masks, and 825 face masks.

Dr. Shaun Sheehan, who leads the COVID-19 Task Force for Penn Highlands, said that so far, the demand on the emergency rooms has been light, which is giving the facilities a chance to stock up on needed supplies.

Norman also restated the steps the healthcare facilities have taken to protect patients and the workers at those facilities following Department of Health and CDC guidelines. The complete list is located on the Penn Highlands website.

What the public can do was also addressed. Norman said there were several things that can be done including:

*Donate blood

*Increase awareness of the need for the donation of Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) items

*Practice hand washing, social distancing, and other recommendations

*Stay calm

*Avoid the misinformation on social media sites and stay with official sites such as the CDC and the PA Department of Health for accurate information.

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