Emergency Nurses Association President Urges Public to Think Twice Before Going to ED for COVID Testing

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Getting test for COVID-19 at an enclosed area where you know people have COVID-19 is “not your best bet”

Emergency Nurses Association (ENA) calls on the public to think twice before visiting local emergency departments (EDs) for COVID-19 testing. YouTube Tips ⓘ

SCHAUMBURG, Ill. – In a Thursday video message, ENA President Jennifer Schmitz, MSN, EMT-P, CEN, CPEN, CNML, FNP-C, NE-BC, urged the public to think twice before visiting local emergency departments for a COVID-19 test.

“Our country is experiencing a big surge in COVID-19 cases and adding people to waiting rooms who want tests is creating overcrowding,” said Schmitz. “If you’re not sure whether you have COVID, coming to an enclosed area where you know people have COVID is not your best bet.”

The association recommended anyone seeking a test to check with state and local health departments for options. Testing site information can also be found here: https://www.hhs.gov/coronavirus/community-based-testing-sites/index.html.

ENA continues to encourage all who are eligible to get vaccinated and receive boosters. In addition, Schmitz is reminding the public to continue social distancing, wearing masks and practicing good hand hygiene.

The Northwest Community Hospital Emergency Department at one point within the past week was “boarding” at least 24 patients because the hospital rooms upstairs were at capacity. Some patients were on hospital beds in hallways in the emergency department. Both Northwest Community Hospital in Arlington Heights and Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge were placed on “bypass” for a period of time this past week. Hospitals on “bypass” restrict incoming patients from paramedic rescue ambulances. Bypasses can be “complete bypasses” or may be “partial bypasses” while allowing trauma patients, heart attack patients and stroke patients, for example.



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