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Visitors restricted from entering Decatur hospitals; 4 COVID cases reported at Pana hospital

COVID meta coronavirus

DECATUR — HSHS St. Mary's Hospital and Decatur Memorial Hospital have suspended visitors for inpatient care effective Saturday due to the high number of COVID-19 cases throughout Central Illinois.

“COVID-19 is spreading throughout our community. Many people may have COVID-19, and could be contagious before they are showing symptoms,” said Dr. Raj Govindaiah, chief medical officer of Memorial Health System. “Our mission is to improve the health of the people and communities we serve, and this policy will allow us to do that.”

Exceptions will be allowed with approval in areas such as the emergency department, obstetrics, pediatrics, certain outpatient procedures and surgeries, as well as for those who may be in end-of-life care or to support a patient with an intellectual disability.

Visitors must wear a face covering that covers their nose and mouth at all times while in the hospital. Communication and information will be provided to patients and families using telephones or video methods when possible.

Visitors for inpatients will also be suspended at HSHS St. John’s Hospital and Memorial Medical Center beginning Monday, Nov. 2.

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Meantime, Pana Community Hospital remains open for walk-in and emergency traffic after health officials announced Friday that four of its employees have tested positive for COVID-19.

Officials said contact tracing has been completed and that anyone with an exposure concern has been notified and that those following the social distancing, hand-washing and mask wearing guidelines would not meet the exposure guidelines.

Photos: Fall around Lake Decatur

Contact Donnette Beckett at (217) 421-6983. Follow her on Twitter: @donnettebHR


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