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New procedures in place at Geisinger hospitals to treat coronavirus victims

Geisinger Health System is implementing restrictions at all its facilities to protect patients and staff.

DANVILLE, Pa. — Geisinger has announced it has three patients with the coronavirus at its facilities. Hospital officials said on Wednesday that they are taking further preventative measures to keep people safe.

Starting Wednesday, all elective, non-urgent procedures will be put on hold for the next two weeks. That includes some surgeries and appointments.

Geisinger is now limiting visitation to one visitor per patient. Visitors must be 18 years or older, immediate family or caregiver, and must not display symptoms of respiratory disease.

Geisinger officials said Tuesday that they are treating three patients with the coronavirus. Hospital officials would not give us any information about the patients who tested positive, or where they are being treated, saying that information can only be released by state health officials.

RELATED: Three patients with presumed positive cases of coronavirus at Geisinger locations

Geisinger's president and CEO issued a statement saying that proper protocols were in place for infection control during the treatment of those three patients and that all its facilities were safe for employees, patients, and visitors.

Geisinger is setting up treatment tents outside of emergency departments to screen people for the symptoms of coronavirus. Anyone who comes to a Geisinger emergency room will go through a screening process. This includes both patients and visitors to the ER. If someone has signs or symptoms of the coronavirus, they may be given a mask and then sent to the treatment tent. The tents are specifically designed to take care of people with signs and symptoms of the coronavirus.

RELATED: Treatment tents set up outside Geisinger's emergency room

Geisinger experts continue to ask that before visiting a doctor's office, convenient care clinic, or emergency department, people should call their primary care doctor's office or Geisinger's 24/7 novel coronavirus hotline at 570-284-3657 if they may have been in contact with someone with COVID-19 or if they have:

  • Cough
  • Fever
  • Shortness of breath

For general questions and information about COVID-19, people can visit geisinger.org/coronavirus. Using these resources before going to a doctor's office, walk-in clinic, or emergency department can help lessen the possible spread of the virus.