Title: Mask Mandate Reinstated in Patient Care Areas at Rhode Island’s Leading Healthcare Systems
In a bid to combat the rising respiratory illness rates, esteemed healthcare providers Care New England (CNE) and Lifespan have jointly announced the reinstatement of mask requirements in patient care areas. This crucial measure aims to enhance the safety of patients, staff, and visitors alike.
Lifespan, which operates prominent medical facilities including Rhode Island Hospital, The Miriam, Newport, and Bradley, has advised its staff to now don Level 2 surgical masks while working in patient care areas. Additionally, masks will be provided to family members and visitors in patient rooms to ensure utmost protection. In line with this precautionary approach, patients in Lifespan medical offices must also wear masks during care or treatment.
Following suit, CNE’s esteemed hospitals, including Women & Infants, The Providence Center, Kent, and Butler, have made masks mandatory for in-patient units. The decision stemmed from the concerning surge in respiratory illness rates among the patient population.
As the recently concluded holiday season serves as fertile ground for the spread of flu, COVID-19, and RSV (Respiratory Syncytial Virus), the Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) strongly urges vigilance in the community. Despite a lower number of reported COVID-19 cases compared to the previous year, it is important to note that the reduced figures may be attributed to the use of at-home tests, which may not always be reported to RIDOH.
To gauge the overall situation, COVID-19-related hospitalizations, emergency visits, and wastewater monitoring have become crucial surveillance metrics. These indicators closely track the prevalence and severity of the pandemic, enabling health authorities to assess the effectiveness of containment measures and deploy resources strategically.
With the mask mandate reinstated and surveillance mechanisms in place, both Care New England and Lifespan remain committed to prioritizing the safety and well-being of the community during these challenging times. By implementing these precautionary measures, these esteemed healthcare systems aim to curtail the transmission of respiratory illnesses, protect vulnerable patients, and ensure a healthier future for all.
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