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Update on BBGH Services & COVID-19

To protect patients and staff to slow the spread of COVID-19, Box Butte General Hospital (BBGH) has implemented a number of safety measures at the hospital, including the Greater Nebraska Medical and Surgical Services (GNMSS) clinic.

Additional closings include The Multi-Specialty Clinic (MSC). The MSC, Wellness Center, and satellite clinics in Hemingford and Hyannis will be suspended through May 11th in response to Governor Pete Ricketts’ Directive Health Measure implemented March 30th. In addition, time sensitive surgeries will be evaluated on a case by case basis. This is best for the safety of the physicians, staff, and valued patients. Hospital personnel will contact all patients impacted and re-evaluate at the end of next week to extend postponements as necessary.

Greater Nebraska Medical and Surgical Services is offering virtual (telehealth) healthcare visits so patients can see their providers from the safety of their homes. These visits are scheduled in the same manner as a regular clinic visit. If an onsite visit is essential, the clinic staff will work with patients to ensure their safety when coming into the clinic. Well patient visits and elderly patients needing lab draws will be seen in the morning, while afternoon visits will be reserved for patients with acute illness. This service does include the specialty surgeons that typically visit from Rural Partners in Medicine.

Box Butte General Hospital is testing for COVID-19 under direction and authority of Panhandle Public Health District (PPHD). If your healthcare provider has determined that a COVID-19 test is warranted, and approval is given by PPHD, the hospital will work with you on scheduling a test by appointment only. Limited testing is still in effect for the Nebraska Panhandle.

If you are feeing anxious about not being able to get tested for COVID-19, remember testing does not change the treatment. If you’re feeling symptoms of COVID-19, (commonly includes fever, dry cough, and shortness of breath), stay home. Separate yourself from other household members and stay in home isolation until 3 things have happened: At least 7 days have passed since symptoms first appeared; Have been fever-free for 72 hours without use of fever-reducing medication; Other symptoms have improved, such as cough or shortness of breath.

There is currently no special treatment for COVID-19 and the ER is not the most appropriate triage center for people who are not in respiratory distress.

Box Butte General Hospital is prepared to care for ill patients and continues to monitor our preparedness as positive cases are confirmed. “We want to assure the communities we serve that BBGH has been planning for weeks to ensure the utmost safe environment for healthcare services during the pandemic. The safety of our patients, employees, and families is BBGH’s highest priority,” said Lori Mazanec, CEO of BBGH.

During the Wellness Center closure, online fitness classes are being offered through YouTube and can be accessed by visiting our website. For the months of April and May, the Wellness Center members will be refunded monthly fees.

Visitor and patient screening will remain the first step in accessing services at BBGH and GNMSS, unless there is a medical emergency. If visiting on continuous days, the screening applies each day.

The importance of staying mentally well is crucial during the period of social distancing.

Box Butte General Hospital encourages you to take care of yourself and your loved ones in all aspects of wellness.

Box Butte General Hospital closely monitors the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines and is working with Nebraska’s state epidemiologist and other public health experts regarding care of patients. Please continue to watch our website for updates on our resources page and the CDC website.