COVID-19 Information on Non-Essential Procedures
Responding to COVID-19
On April 22, 2020, Ohio Department of Health Director Amy Acton, M.D., MPH, and Governor Mike DeWine asked hospital and ambulatory surgical facility providers to reevaluate non-essential or elective surgeries and other procedures that were postponed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In March, Dr. Acton had ordered the cancellation/postponement of such procedures in an effort to conserve personal protective equipment (PPE) and hospital beds in anticipation of a significant spike in COVID-19 patients.
Due to the actions of Ohioans to flatten the curve and the collaboration between healthcare systems, that spike has thus far been averted.
As such, hospital and ambulatory surgical facility providers should now:
- Ensure adequate supply of PPE, other equipment, and supplies are available across their regions to cover anticipated sites of surge, including congregate care settings.
- Ensure testing capability in the community is adequate to cover the additional routine testing of patients and healthcare personnel.
- Implement infection control and environmental mitigation strategies, including social distancing, disinfection of common areas, and other precautions necessary to minimize the spread of disease.
- Reach out to patients and reassess the need for surgeries and procedures that have been delayed.
- During this reassessment, consider the patient’s current health situation and quality of life.
- Inform patients of the risk of contracting COVID-19 and how that could impact the post-operative recovery process. Provide all information necessary for patients to make informed decisions.
- For new or other chronic conditions that may have a significant impact on a patient’s health or quality of life, consider moving forward with diagnostic procedures.
- Pay greater attention to the effectiveness of non-surgical options.
- Use clinical judgment to make responsible decisions about what procedures are necessary.
- Make a joint decision with the patient about whether to proceed.
For answers to your COVID-19 questions, call 1-833-4-ASK-ODH (1-833-427-5634).
If you or a loved one are experiencing anxiety related to the coronavirus pandemic, help is available. Call the Disaster Distress Helpline at 1-800-985-5990 (1-800-846-8517 TTY); connect with a trained counselor through the Ohio Crisis Text Line by texting the keyword “4HOPE” to 741 741; or call the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services help line at 1-877-275-6364 to find resources in your community.
- Stay home when you are sick
- Avoid contact with people who are sick
- Get adequate sleep and eat well-balanced meals
- Wash hands often with water and soap (20 seconds or longer)
- Dry hands with a clean towel or air dry your hands
- Cover your mouth with a tissue or sleeve when coughing or sneezing
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, mouth with unwashed hands or after touching surfaces
- Clean and disinfect "High-Touch" surfaces often
- Call before visiting your doctor
- Practice good hygiene habits