CHICO, Calif. – In order to make sure urgent health care needs for local residents are still being met during the coronavirus pandemic, Enloe Medical Center has launched a Virtual Emergency Department.
The service connects residents with an Enloe nurse, and if needed, an Emergency Department physician, nurses will be able to answer COVID-19 questions too.
“We created this service because we believe that people who would normally seek care in the Emergency Department could benefit from access to medical care without leaving their homes,” said Judy Cline, RN, Director of Enloe’s Emergency Department, Prompt Care, and Trauma Services. “We don’t want people who may need professional medical care to suffer with illness or minor injuries. It’s absolutely important that people continue to receive the emergency care they need at this time.”
Simply call 530-332-9540 and choose option 2. Enloe officials said nurses will staff the line seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., any messages left outside of those hours will receive a callback. If callers select option 1, they will be provided with recorded information and resources related to COVID-19.
When calling the number, a nurse will speak and provide guidance as to whether they need an in-person or virtual visit with a physician. A virtual visit will be conducted through the Zoom app or by phone.
“The Virtual Emergency Department is intended for people with urgent care needs or for those who aren’t sure if they need to be seen here,” Cline said. “Anyone with life-threatening symptoms should immediately come to the Emergency Department or call 911.”
Enloe officials said everyone coming to the hospital is screened before entry. The medical center has separate areas for emergency patients with respiratory symptoms, the emergency department also has separate units to care for patients with symptoms consistent with COVID-19.