Over the last several weeks, there has been an increase in transmission of COVID-19 throughout the community, and with it, a steady increase in the number of patients needing hospitalized care at Mount Nittany Medical Center.
Due to this increase, effective August 25 until further notice, Mount Nittany Health will no longer permit visitors at the Medical Center except for special circumstances, including situations such as end of life, birth and special needs.
In addition, one caregiver may accompany patients at the emergency department, Mount Nittany Physician Group locations, CANCER CARE PARTNERSHIP, and all outpatient departments, if needed. Please be aware that depending on the circumstances, caregivers may be asked by our staff to find an alternative place to wait, such as their vehicle.
As a reminder, all individuals within our facilities are required to wear a mask. As an additional safety measure during this time, inpatients at the Medical Center will also be asked to mask when a healthcare provider or other staff member enters their room.
We respect and understand the need for patients to have loved ones near to support the healing process, however, in this environment, it's imperative that we limit the number of people in our facilities when possible. We strongly encourage everyone to utilize other means of communication. We are sensitive to the separation this restriction causes, but believe this measure of protection is essential and in the best interest of our providers, staff and patients.
Additionally, Mount Nittany Health continues to encourage the community to vaccinate and practice the other mitigation measures of masking, physical-distancing and hand hygiene. Community members can sign up for a vaccine by visiting mountnittany.org/COVID.
For questions regarding inpatient visitation or outpatient visits at the Medical Center or Emergency Department, please call 814.231.7000. For questions regarding accompanying patients to a scheduled appointment at Mount Nittany Physician Group practices, please call the practice directly. A complete listing of phone numbers is available on our website.
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:
Mount Nittany Health conducts screenings of patients entering its facilities. This screening process is another measure that we are 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.
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 his or her 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.
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 2 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
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 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 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Pennsylvania Department of Health for screening and testing 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 nonessential/elective services. We continue to evaluate and will announce further measures as needed, with the focus being on our community’s health and wellbeing.
Test collection sites