Mount Nittany Health policies and practices for COVID-19

At Mount Nittany Health, the safety of our patients and staff is always our priority. Our COVID-19 policies and practices are updated as we see changes to conditions in the community and in CDC and DOH guidelines for the care, safety, and placement of our patients. These are some of our current practices:

  • COVID testing is required of patients three days prior to surgery.

  • COVID testing is required of women preparing to deliver a baby.

  • All patients will be screened for COVID-19, which includes a temperature check, including patients admitted to the hospital.

  • We have policies in place regarding room assignments of COVID-19 positive inpatients.

    • Patients hospitalized with COVID-19 are assigned a room based on a combination of factors following CDC and DOH guidelines.

    • No visitors are allowed to visit patients hospitalized with COVID-19.

    • Single patient room placement is prioritized for our inpatients whenever possible, however, a hospitalized COVID-19 patient may be roomed with another patient confirmed to also have COVID-19.

  • For the safety of our patients and staff, all patients and visitors are required to mask.

 

Patient visitation is temporarily suspended at all Mount Nittany Health locations until further notice. 

Mount Nittany Health enacts temporary visitation restrictions

Mount Nittany Health is committed to protecting the health, safety and wellbeing of the community. In doing so, the health system is limiting the number of people in Mount Nittany Medical Center, emergency department, CANCER CARE PARTNERSHIP, Physician Group, and all other outpatient locations, through the following visitation restrictions, effective immediately and until further notice.

 

In the best interest of patients, visitors and staff during this evolving situation, visitors of hospitalized patients at Mount Nittany Medical Center will no longer be permitted, except for select circumstances. For questions regarding visitation at the Medical Center, please call 814.231.7000.

One caregiver may accompany patients of our emergency department, Mount Nittany Physician Group, CANCER CARE PARTNERSHIP and outpatient Medical Center locations, if needed. Depending on the circumstances, the caregiver may be asked to find an alternative place to wait for the patient, such as their vehicle. 

“At Mount Nittany Health, we respect and understand the need for patients to have loved ones near to support the healing process,” said Nirmal Joshi, MD, FACP, chief medical officer, Mount Nittany Health. “In this environment, however, it's imperative that we limit the number of people in our facilities, including visitors. We strongly encourage everyone to utilize other means of communication, such as phone calls, video chats on cell phones or other mobile devices. We are sensitive to the separation this restriction causes our patients and their loved ones, but we believe this measure of protection is essential at this time to keep everyone safe.”

Questions regarding inpatient visitation or outpatient visits at the Medical Center and emergency department can be directed to 814.231.7000. For questions regarding accompanying patients to a scheduled appointment at Mount Nittany Physician Group practices, practices should be called directly. A complete listing of phone numbers is available on our website at mountnittany.org.

Screenings at all Mount Nittany Health facilities

Mount Nittany Health conducts screenings of patients entering our facilities. This screening process is another measure that Mount Nittany Health is taking to protect our patients, staff and community against the spread of COVID-19.

The screening process will include key questions based on recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

In the best interest of patients, visitors and staff during this evolving situation, visitors of hospitalized patients at Mount Nittany Medical Center will no longer be permitted, except for select circumstances. For questions regarding visitation at the Medical Center, please call 814.231.7000.

One caregiver may accompany patients of our emergency department, Mount Nittany Physician Group, CANCER CARE PARTNERSHIP and outpatient Medical Center locations, if needed. Depending on the circumstances, the caregiver may be asked to find an alternative place to wait for the patient, such as their vehicle. 

Approved visitors/caregivers to the emergency department, Mount Nittany Physician Group, CANCER CARE PARTNERSHIP and outpatient Medical Center locations will undergo a screening process and be required to wear a mask for the duration of their stay. If a visitor does not have a mask, one will be provided. Any visitor who does not pass the screening process will be informed of the policy and be asked to wait in their vehicle or return home.

Our team will work as quickly as possible to safely and effectively complete the screenings; please prepare accordingly and allow extra time for this process.

Masking requirements extend to patients and essential caregivers at Mount Nittany Health off-site locations

As an additional measure to protect patients, staff and community members against the spread of COVID-19, Mount Nittany Health is extending its masking requirement to patients and essential caregivers at all Mount Nittany Health off-site locations, including all Mount Nittany Physician Group offices. This is an extension of patient and visitor masking requirements already in place at Mount Nittany Medical Center.

All patients and essential caregivers must wear a mask when accessing a Mount Nittany Health off-site facility. Patients who are feeling short of breath or are otherwise unable to tolerate a mask and children under the age of two will not be required to wear a mask.

Patients and essential caregivers are encouraged to wear their own masks from home. If needed, masks will be provided by the health system’s screening teams before patients and essential caregivers enter the facility; the masks should be reused as long as possible.

Screening procedures at all entrances remain in effect.

Mount Nittany Health is committed to the health, safety and wellbeing of its patients, staff and community. We are prepared for potential infectious disease outbreaks, whether its measles, flu or new viruses like coronavirus as part of our commitment to prevent disease and ensure a healthy community for all. We rigorously follow the guidance from the CDC and Pennsylvania Department of Health for screening and testing of patients for COVID-19; ensuring all levels of protection for our patients, staff and community.

As the situation continues to evolve, we have taken steps to prepare and protect our community, including limiting visitors in our facilities at Mount Nittany Health, except for special circumstances, test collection sites, screening process and rescheduling of all non-essential/elective services. We continue to evaluate and will announce further measures as needed with the focus on our community’s health and wellbeing.