Important Employee Information and Links

Coronavirus Announcements for Employees

COVID Employee Resources COVID Employee Resources

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April 9, 2020

Governor’s Order
On Wednesday, April 8, Gov. Tom Wolf signed an executive order requiring healthcare providers report supplies of ventilators, personal protective equipment (PPE), pharmaceuticals, and other medical equipment to the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency (PEMA) and authorizing the state agency to shift those supplies to best respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Executive Operating Team along with our emergency management team are working to better understand what is required of us to comply with the order as well as how the order may impact us.

We will share more when we have additional information. 

A message from the Hospital Board leadership
On behalf of the Board of Directors, we again wanted to take a moment and say THANK YOU for all you are doing to keep our community safe. During trying times like these, it’s a great comfort knowing that we have the best team of healthcare professionals in the area fighting for us. 

You are all making tremendous sacrifices, both personally and professionally, to be here for us and to protect us in a time of need.

The Board and community cannot thank you enough for your courage, strength, and perseverance as you fight through the current threat.

Timothy Apple, Board Chair
J. Donald Steele, Vice Chair
John Meckley, Immediate Past Chair

Telemedicine (Voice and Video) Update
More and more providers are using telemedicine (voice and video) to successfully and safely connect with patients through a secure digital platform. 

This is a great achievement for us and one that has the potential to benefit the organization well past the COVID-19 pandemic. Thank you to everyone involved with quickly implementing the system. Your efforts are very much appreciated.

Testing Results
As of 9 am today (Thursday, April 9, 2020):
We’ve tested 413 patients.
We’ve received 367 results back.
We have 24 positive results.
We’re awaiting results on 46 tests.
As previously reported, we have 1 death.

Employee Notification of COVID-19 Patient Testing Results
All employees who provide care to patients under investigation and those with confirmed COVID-19 are required to identify themselves on an encounter log that is being tracked by Employee Health and then self-monitor for symptoms for at least 14 days.

When patient test results are received, the following protocols will be followed to notify employees of test results within 24 hours:

  • Patient is positive for COVID-19: Employee Health will personally telephone each employee who provided care to that patient to advise on any next steps.
  • Patient is negative for COVID-19: Employee Health will email each employee who provided care to that patient notifying them that they can end self-monitoring based on that particular patient encounter. Employees caring for multiple patients may still need to self-monitor due to the care of other patients awaiting test results.


Kendra Aucker,
President and CEO 

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April 8, 2020

Employee Resources in Portal
Recognizing the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted all of us in different ways, People and Culture has assembled a variety of resources to help you meet those various needs. From accessing the Employee Assistance Program to food banks to FAQs for employees currently not working, the resources are vast, and it is hoped they will help you and your family navigate this challenging time. 

In addition, the Greater Susquehanna Valley United Way is promoting other avenues for community members to access resources—call 2-1-1, text your zip code to 898211, or visit https://PA211NE.org.

Screening Contractors
We have started a process to screen contractors—including temperature, travel history, and symptoms—as they arrive on campus to work on PRIME. 

Thank you to everyone who helped develop the process and those who are helping to staff the screening station.  

Unemployment Claims
Reports indicate the state’s Office of Unemployment Compensation is overwhelmed by claims associated with the COVID-19 situation. Furloughed employees and those whose hours have been reduced may experience a delay in having their claims processed and/or receiving payment. 

While the People and Culture team is responding daily to state requests for employment and wage verification, they are not able to provide Evangelical employees with daily updates on the status of their claims. Anyone seeking information on their claim should use the tools available through the unemployment website and call center. 

People and Culture has provided filing instructions and answers to frequently asked questions to help employees submit initial claims in an accurate and timely manner. In addition, instructions on how to access key employment information like hire date, pay rate, and prior paystubs are available. Those resources are available through the Employee Portal: evanhospital.com/family.

Miller Center Cancellations
The YMCA at the Miller Center has cancelled all events and participatory sports through the end of April with the expectation that the facility will remain closed over the same timeframe. 

Kendra Aucker,
President and CEO  
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April 7, 2020

Benefit Update
Previously, we committed to covering the employee medical contributions for any employee who went without pay through May 2, 2020. For the pay period ending April 4, 2020, we were able to expand that to include employees who experienced a reduction in their paid hours of 25% or greater for the pay period. 

We aren’t committing to do that every pay period but will evaluate based on a pay period to pay period basis.

Additional Negative Pressure Rooms
Work was completed in the Emergency Department to add two additional negative pressure rooms. Negative pressure rooms are a key component in our overall infection control strategy. I want to thank everyone involved in the effort.

Temperature Screening
I want to take a moment and recognize the team effort that supported the launch of temperature screening and mandatory masking this week. I appreciate the dedication and flexibility demonstrated by everyone. 

It’s important to note the process is working. Several individuals were found to have fevers and were asked to return to their homes and monitor symptoms.

Disinfecting to Re-use Masks and Filters
I’d also like to send kudos to the team who has been working to establish a process for disinfecting masks and filters with ultraviolet light. This is a great example of innovating in the face of adversity—thank you to all involved.

Kendra Aucker,
President and CEO  
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April 6, 2020


Take Your Mask and Badge with You
Beginning today (Monday, April 6, 2020), directors and supervisors have started to distribute masks. All employees are asked to wear their mask when entering any Hospital facility. Patients will also be masked.

You should take your badge and your mask with you when you leave at the end of your shift. You should be wearing both when you return to work for your next shift.

Masks will be issued weekly as long as supplies last.  

As a reminder, employees working at the Hospital and Plaza 15 should report to the Rooke Pavilion to complete employee screening before beginning their shift. You should not be using any other entrance prior to completing the screening process each time you come to work. 

Rooms Available
Any Hospital employee who is continuing to work during the pandemic and would like a respite, would like to remain quarantined from their family, or is awaiting COVID-19 test results is eligible for a hotel room. The program is being administered by Union County and is free to healthcare workers.

If you need a room, call the acting incident commander for the day. That person and their contact information are listed in the daily COVID-19 update sent out each morning.  

ED Alternative Exam Site
We continue to plan for a potential surge in confirmed or suspected COVID-19 cases. To manage times when the current COVID-19 Emergency Department exam area (the ambulance garage bay) is at capacity, we are installing some tents in the ambulance driveway on the north side of the Hospital.

The tents are being installed today and the site should be available as needed beginning Tuesday.

Thank you to everyone who has been part of the effort to make the ED alternative exam site operational; I know there was a lot of work put into it.

Elective Surgeries and Procedures
We have cancelled all elective surgeries and procedures through the week of April 13, 2020. We will continue to make that decision week by week to best manage patient communication and maintain our ability to quickly ramp our operating rooms back up when that is permissible. 

I know there are some rumors to the contrary, but please know Geisinger has also cancelled its elective surgeries and their daily case volume in the ORs is only a fraction of what they normally do.

Kendra Aucker,
President and CEO 

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April 5, 2020


As a reminder, we have a number of changes effective Monday:

Mandatory Masking
Effective Monday, April 6, 2020, all patients and staff entering Hospital facilities, including off-site locations, will be required to mask. Masks will be distributed to staff through supervisors and directors. Patients will receive masks at entry screening points.

The mask is required in all patient care, common areas, and hallways at all times. The only exception allows team members who work in their own office to remove their mask with the door closed and while working alone, with the mask being worn when another person enters the office.

Temperature Screening
Effective Monday, April 6, 2020, all patients and staff entering Hospital facilities, including off-site locations, will undergo a temperature screening. Staff should plan accordingly realizing it may take longer to get through the screening process to clock-in for start of shift.

Changing Alternative Testing Site Hours
Effective Monday, April 6, 2020, the Hospital’s alternative testing site for COVID-19, located behind McCann School of Business in the Plaza 15 Shopping Center along Route in Lewisburg, will be open 9 am to 6 pm daily.

Kendra Aucker,
President and CEO 

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April 3, 2020

Mandatory Masking
Effective Monday, April 6, 2020, everyone (patients and staff) entering Hospital facilities, including off-site locations, will be required to mask. Masks will be distributed to staff through supervisors and directors. Patients will receive masks at entry screening points.

The mask is required in all patient care, common areas, and hallways at all times. The only exception allows team members who work in their own office to remove their mask with the door closed and while working alone, with the mask being worn when another person enters the office.

Temperature Screening
Effective Monday, April 6, 2020, everyone (patients and staff) entering Hospital facilities, including off-site locations, will undergo a temperature screening. Staff should plan accordingly realizing it may take longer to get through the screening process to clock-in for start of shift. 

Changing Alternative Testing Site Hours
Effective Monday, April 6, 2020, the Hospital’s alternative testing site for COVID-19, located behind McCann School of Business in the Plaza 15 Shopping Center along Route in Lewisburg, will be open 9 am to 6 pm daily.

Additional Visitor Limitations
To further adhere to the state’s stay-at-home directive and to help control the spread of COVID-19, we are again adjusting our visitation policies.

We will no longer allow patients arriving at Donehower-Eisenhower Pavilion for Imaging and Laboratory services to be escorted by a visitor. Exceptions will include patients in wheelchairs, those who need assistance walking, children under the age of 18, and any patient with cognitive impairment.

The same restrictions will now apply to Urgent Care and all outpatient offices.  

Kendra Aucker,
President and CEO  
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April 2, 2020

COVID-19 Emergency Fund
Along with supplies and food, we are grateful for those in the community who have expressed a desire to offer the Hospital financial support in these difficult times. By suspending elective surgeries and procedures as well as condensing our outpatient practices, we’ve reduced our net revenue by more than 30%. At the same time, we’ve made significant, unplanned investments in more protective equipment.

So, there is a financial need and we are extremely grateful for the financial support we receive from community members and local businesses. 

To make a donation, mail a check payable to Evangelical Community Hospital with COVID-19 Emergency Fund in the Memo to Evangelical Community Hospital, Attention Development-00A, 1 Hospital Drive, Lewisburg, Pa. 17837. You can also use the online donation form at evanhospital.com/support. Be sure to click the box for giving in the memory or honor of someone and write COVID-19 Emergency Fund in the comments section of the form.  

Changes in Visitation Restrictions
As we continue to try to limit exposure of the staff working on-site and our patients, we are further restricting visitation.

We will no longer permit any visitors in the Emergency Department. Anyone accompanying a patient to the ED will be asked to wait outside the facility in their vehicle.

We will also now be limiting visitation to one parent for any patient under the age of 18.

Epic Transition
While we continue to work through the COVID-19 pandemic response, we must also consider how best to position the Hospital to complete projects vital to our long-term care of the community. The transition to the Epic platform is certainly one of those mission-critical projects.

IT is in the process of working with Geisinger to begin bringing the work groups back up to speed so progress toward a go live in 2021 can continue. The work groups are set to begin again the week of April 13.

Please understand, not all employees who worked with one of the groups and are currently on non-essential status will be recalled for the effort. Any questions on the impact of the Epic work group re-activation on your status should be directed to your supervisor.

Stay-at-Home Orders
With the governor widening his stay-at-home orders across the state, it’s important that essential/on-site and essential/on-call employees keep their Hospital ID badge with them at all times. If travel becomes restricted, your Hospital badge will act as your pass to travel from home to work.  

People and Culture will also be issuing a letter via email to all essential/on-site and essential/on-call employees to support their need to be traveling for work purposes.    

Telemedicine Details
I thought you might appreciate some additional information on how we are using telemedicine.

The Emergency Department providers are able to use video technology to view patients being seen in the COVID-19 screening area outside of the building without leaving the ED. Inpatient providers are able to use iPads to seek video consults from other providers for COVID-19 patients without exposing more individuals to the patient. Outpatient office providers are able to conduct video-to-voice consults for most patient visits. As this technology becomes available to providers, more applications will no doubt become apparent.

PRIME
The PRIME Project began ramping back up last week and contractors are back on-site this week.

Quandel, the Hospital’s construction partner, has developed site-specific guidelines that include screening for illness, installation of hand washing and hand sanitizing stations, as well as assignment of work areas by designated trade and shift to reduce congregation of workers at any time. The site is also cleaned by an independent contractor daily.

On average 40 to 45 workers per shift will be on-site working in their specialty areas compared to around 130 prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The construction site continues to remain blocked off from existing parts of the Hospital that are active in providing healthcare. The two sites remain completely separate. An exception to this will occur April 6-8 when electrical contractors will need to access the basement of the Hospital to complete some work. All workers will enter the facility through the Rooke Pavilion and will be screened the same way Evangelical employees are screened. 

We are currently assessing any impact the COVID-19 response will have on the project schedule. Any change to the timeline will be communicated as soon as the plan is finalized.

Kendra Aucker,
President and CEO  
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April 1, 2020

Employees and/or Visitors Using PPE Not Issued by the Hospital
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the Hospital issued all employees a low-level procedure mask for their use beginning on March 30, 2020. These masks are to be used by employees for additional reassurance at their discretion during this challenging time. The Hospital is by no means advocating that this practice has any tangible health benefits. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC), while continuing to discuss this topic, has not issued a directive indicating that this should be the practice at this time.

Employees who have attained their own supply of masks, face shields, googles, or other PPE (whether homemade or commercially produced) and wishing to use them in the workplace are required to adhere to the following guidelines:

  • The PPE should be clean, serviceable, and worn appropriately when in the public view.
  • Prior to wear in a public area, the PPE must be approved by the Department Manager.
  • Employees should use caution when handling and storing their own PPE to reduce transfer of any droplets and potential contamination from themselves during donning and doffing.

All employees providing direct care to a patient under investigation for COVID-19 or any patient under isolation precautions must continue to wear Hospital-provided PPE as directed by Infection Control. We currently have a solid supply of PPE and we are closely monitoring that supply while actively seeking additional avenues of resupply.

Patients and visitors may wear their own masks while in the facility. Patients expressing symptoms will be required to don a level 1 mask.

Community Support
We have received numerous requests from the community asking how they can show their appreciation for you and what you are doing for the community during this pandemic. In addition to monetary support and donations of food and supplies, we now have a way for them to send cards, notes, and other visual displays.

Community members can send their well wishes to together@evanhospital.com. Received notes and cards will be displayed in the same area that we post patient feedback on EvanNet. We’ll also be sharing some through our social media outlets.

Kendra Aucker,
President and CEO 

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Previous COVID-19 Updates Previous COVID-19 Updates

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Links

The following links provide access to web-based services and information for employees.