Coronavirus - Information and Updates - VA Rocky Mountain Network
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VA Rocky Mountain Network

 

Coronavirus - Information and Updates

Coronavirus Update - March 23, 2020: Screening Protocol in Place for all Persons entering VA Campuses and VA Clinics

Visitor Restrictions in Place

VA has a comprehensive plan in place to protect the health of everyone who receives care or works at one of our facilities. Using an abundance of caution, all VA medical facilities are implementing screening measures for signs of respiratory illness and exposure to COVID-19. This protocol will be in place until further notice. Onsite, we will use standardized screening questions at strategic entry points. Please arrive 30 minutes early for your appointment and please come alone unless you need assistance from a direct caregiver and/or it is medically necessary. No one under the age of 18 will be permitted in any VA facility or clinic, and visitation is limited. Exceptions will be made on a case by case basis. We appreciate your cooperation and patience during this time. Please follow this page for additional updates.

VA virtual health care options

Important! Please do not come to a VA medical facility if you have flu-like symptoms. Call or message first. Please call 877-468-8387 and press 3.

VA offers virtual health care options including MyHealtheVet, VA Video Connect, and Annie App for Veterans that allow you to communicate with your provider and manage your self-care online. All you need is an internet connection and a smartphone, tablet, or desktop or laptop computer. More information on VA virtual health care.

Montana VA Health Care Nursing Home Restrictions

To reduce the impact of flu, COVID-19, and other illnesses on our most vulnerable patients all VA nursing homes have adapted a no visitor policy until further notice. Exceptions made on a case by case basis. We apologize for any inconvenience. Our Veterans safety is our number one priority. For more information please call 406-874-5809 and talk to a nurse.

Know the symptoms

COVID-19 causes flu and cold-like symptoms, including fever, cough, and shortness of breath. The symptoms usually appear 2 to 14 days after being exposed to the virus.

Understand the risk

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention considers the virus a serious public health threat. For the general public, the immediate health risk from the coronavirus currently is low.

  • People in communities where ongoing community spread with the virus that causes COVID-19 has been reported are at elevated though still relatively low risk of exposure.
  • Healthcare workers caring for patients with COVID-19 are at elevated risk of exposure.
  • Close contacts of persons with COVID-19 also are at elevated risk of exposure.
  • Travelers returning from affected international locations where community spread is occurring also are at elevated risk of exposure.

Get a Flu Shot if you Haven’t Already

Based on current infection rates, the flu is much more common than the coronavirus.

While there currently is no vaccine to prevent the coronavirus, you are still advised to get a flu shot. The flu vaccine won’t protect you from the coronavirus, but it could prevent you from getting both viruses at once.

How it spreads

The coronavirus spreads through respiratory droplets from coughs or sneezes. These droplets fall to surrounding surfaces, and when touched, end up on your hands. The virus then enters the body when you touch your eyes, nose, or mouth.

Take precautions against infection

  • Keep your hands clean by washing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or using a hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes with tissues or your arm/sleeve and dispose of tissues in the trash
  • Avoid people who are sick
  • Avoid sharing items like dishes and bedding and keep surfaces clean with disinfecting wipes

What to do if you think you are infected

Please stay at home and separate yourself from other people. Treat your symptoms with Tylenol, ibuprofen, or over the counter cough medications.

For the most current information go to:

CDC Coronavirus Disease website

VA’s Public Health Website

Thank you for your patience during this time. VA is committed to keeping everyone healthy and safe in our facilities.