LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (News release) — Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System will implement screening questions at all facilities beginning Tuesday, March 10 to ensure that Veterans, employees and the public are protected from High Consequence Infections like flu and coronavirus, known as COVID-19.
All Veterans who have flu-like symptoms such as fever, cough and upper respiratory illness should call their clinic or the afterhours nurse triage line at 501-257-2006 before visiting a facility or a local clinic, or present to the Emergency Department, local ER or urgent care facility. Veterans are being asked to limit visitors to immediate family members or designated caregivers.
Anyone entering a facility will be asked three questions:
- Do you have a fever? Do you have a worsening cough or flu-like symptoms?
- Have you traveled to China, Japan, Italy, Iran or South Korea in the last 14 days?
- Have you been in close contact with someone, including health care workers, confirmed to have the coronavirus disease?
Access will be limited to specific entry points at all facilities. At John L. McClellan Memorial Veterans Hospital in Little Rock, screening points will be set up at the main entrance, the south entrance and the Emergency Department entrance. After hours screening will be at the Emergency Department entrance. At the Eugene J. Towbin VA Medical Center in North Little Rock, all traffic will be directed to screening points set up in the parking lot off Cypress Street from 5:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. After hours and weekend screening will be at the north entrance to building 170.
“We apologize for any delays or inconvenience this screening may cause,” said Dr. Margie Scott, Medical Center director. “We are doing all we can to protect our Veterans and employees while providing excellent medical care. We’re asking for patience and understanding during this outbreak.”
In addition to calling first, Veterans are asked to consider using virtual care options such as telehealth, VA Video Connect or MyHealtheVet secure messaging.
Visitors who do not feel well are being asked to postpone their visit and to read the VA’s latest information on COVID-19 at https://www.publichealth.va.gov/n-coronavirus/