Brookings, S.D. – Mar. 18, 2020 – Following COVID-19 social distancing guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the South Dakota Department of Health (DOH) and the White House, Brookings Health System has suspended all in-person events, classes and support groups at their facilities.
“Reducing the number of people from the general public inside our doors enables us to better maintain the microbial integrity of our facility,” said Infection Preventionist Bunny Christie. “While the COVID-19 threat exists, Brookings Health must protect our patients who need care as well as our team members who need to stay healthy in order to care for our patients.”
The health system is exploring ways to host certain classes and events virtually.
The public can find the latest information on COVID-19 at brookingshealth.org/COVID. The page also includes links to the CDC and DOH websites.
“Remember,” said Christie, “this is an evolving situation. Get information about COVID-19 from a credible source and do not spread misinformation.”
Health System Asks Public to Follow COVID-19 Triage
Triage Guidance for the Public
To help local healthcare teams care for individuals with COVID-19 symptoms, Brookings Health requests the public to follow triage guidelines:
• Seek care immediately if you have symptoms (fever, coughing, shortness of breath) and fall in to one of these categories:
• 65+ years old
• Under 5 years old
• Have a chronic medical condition like heart disease, diabetes, lung disease or other immune compromising condition
• If you do not fall into the above categories, seek medical attention if your illness is worsening, including:
• A fever of 100.4°F or greater
• Difficulty breathing
• STAY AT HOME except to receive medical care.
• Severe symptoms include:
• Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
• Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
• New confusion or inability to arouse
• Bluish lips or face
How the Public Can Prevent Infection
The public should remain calm and use scientifically proven infection control methods.