Beaumont: Emergency centers remain open amid coronavirus pandemic

Beaumont emergency centers are open for non-COVID-19 medical emergencies

Paramedics wheel a patient wearing a breathing apparatus into the emergency room at Wyckoff Heights Medical Center, Monday, April 6, 2020, in New York. The new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms for most people, but for some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness or death. (AP Photo/John Minchillo) (Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

Beaumont Health announced Thursday that all hospital emergency centers will remain open amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic for medical emergencies unrelated to COVID-19.

Beaumont’s emergency centers offer care for medical emergencies and traumas including heart attacks, strokes, seizures and injuries, officials said.

Officials say emergency centers are open 24/7 at seven Beaumont hospitals -- excluding Beaumont, Wayne -- and at the freestanding emergency center in Canton.

The following hospitals have emergency centers available for non-COVID-19 care:

Individuals experiencing the following symptoms should call 9-1-1 or visit their local hospital’s emergency center immediately:

  • Wheezing, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Chest pain
  • Displaced or open wound fractures
  • Fainting or dizziness
  • Sudden numbness or weakness
  • Bleeding that cannot be stopped
  • Abdominal pain – especially intense localized pain
  • Fever with convulsions or any fever in children under 3 months of age
  • Confusion or changes in mental status
  • Coughing or vomiting blood
  • Severe headache or head injury, especially if the individual is on aspirin or blood thinners
  • Blood in the urine or bloody diarrhea
  • Sudden inability to speak, see, walk or move

Medical professionals are concerned that individuals who need medical care may not seek it right away, due to the large number of COVID-19 patients in Metro Detroit hospitals.

“We’ve taken extra precautions to ensure our Emergency Centers are disinfected, clean and staffed to assist patients with non-COVID-19 medical emergencies,” said Dr. James Ziadeh, Chief of Emergency Medicine at Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak. “Those experiencing chest pains, stroke symptoms or any other medical emergency should not hesitate to call 911, or visit one of our Emergency Centers. We are concerned some patients might be experiencing medical emergencies and may be reluctant to seek care, which could potentially put their lives in danger.”

Click here to learn more about Beaumont’s emergency services.

Anyone who believes they have been exposed to COVID-19 should contact their medical provider right away.

How COVID-19 Spreads

Person-to-person spread

The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.

  • Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
  • Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.

Can someone spread the virus without being sick?

  • Spread is possible before people show symptoms. People who are not showing symptoms can still be carrying the virus and can still pass it on to other people.

Spread from contact with contaminated surfaces or objects

It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.

How easily the virus spreads

How easily a virus spreads from person-to-person can vary. Some viruses are highly contagious (spread easily), like measles, while other viruses do not spread as easily. Another factor is whether the spread is sustained, spreading continually without stopping.

Prevention and Treatment

There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. However, as a reminder, CDC always recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases, including:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.

People who think they may have been exposed to COVID-19 should contact their healthcare provider immediately.

Question about coronavirus? Ask Dr. McGeorge here.

Read more about coronavirus here.

About the Author: