Middlesex Health is, once again, performing elective surgeries.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Middlesex, like many other health systems, had halted all purely elective surgeries in late March, but continued to perform urgent or emergency surgeries as needed. The decision to resume elective surgeries was made because Middlesex believes it is now safe to do so. Middlesex Health has implemented additional safety procedures and its processes and policies are in line with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Connecticut Department of Public Health and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
All Middlesex Health surgery patients will be tested for COVID-19 three to four days prior to their procedure and asked to self-quarantine from the day of the swabbing until their surgery date. Testing for COVID-19 will be done at a trailer outside of the Emergency Department on Crescent Street in Middletown. The hospital will call patients to schedule an appointment for their COVID-19 test.
If a patient tests positive for COVID-19, their health care provider will contact them directly to determine next steps. Urgent or emergency surgeries can still take place, but extra precautions will be taken to protect patients and staff. Purely elective surgeries may be postponed for two weeks, or until it is safe for the surgery to be performed.
As a reminder, it is important to keep up with your medical care, including routine physicals, even during a pandemic, and you should always seek emergency care if you need it. Nationwide, there has been a significant increase in mortality rates—more deaths than can be attributed to COVID-19. The worry is that people are not seeking emergency care when they feel very sick.
It is OK to delay some medical appointments for a short while, such as appointments for wellness visits or physical exams, but routine follow-up appointments for chronic medical conditions, such as high blood pressure or diabetes, should still occur.
Putting off annual exams and important tests and procedures can have unintended long-term consequences. It could mean that you miss identifying a problem early, allowing it to become a much bigger problem.
For all COVID-19 information related to Middlesex Health, please visit MiddlesexHealth.org/ready.