CoxHealth will begin testing patients for COVID-19 prior to surgeries, procedures

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (Edited News Release) -- Beginning June 22, CoxHealth will begin testing patients for COVID-19 prior to all surgeries and select procedures.

This decision, which includes all hospitals and facilities, is made to help streamline care as disease prevalence rises throughout the region. The results of the tests will allow for the use of proper personal protective equipment – as higher levels are required to prevent transmission of the virus – and appropriate placement of patients within the hospitals. It will also foster a safe environment for staff and patients, and help contribute to health data about the prevalence of COVID in local communities.

“CoxHealth began testing high-risk patients as the COVID pandemic began, but as we see prevalence in our community start to ruse, we feel we must know whether or not all of our patients are infected with coronavirus prior to surgery or procedures,” says Karen Kramer, CHO and CoxHealth’s Incident Commander for COVID-19 response. “It is important that we have this information so proper precautions may be taken if someone is infected, and help ensure the virus is not transferred to others.”

Patients will be informed of where and when they should report for testing, which will be done approximately three days before a scheduled surgery or procedure. They are then asked to quarantine at home until their surgery to avoid contracting the virus.

Various testing locations are established throughout the area, helping patients stay close to home.