Great Falls Clinic Prepares for COVID-19: Details and Plan Below
This page will be updated regularly. If you have any questions regarding the information provided, please call us at 406-454-2171.
The Great Falls Clinic currently has the following safety measures in place:
- Offering virtual visits
- Onsite screening
- Universal masking
- Social distancing requirements
- Visitor limitations
Please read more about each measure below. For questions please call us at 406-454-2171.
Effective Friday, May 1, 2020:
Universal Masking Policy now in place for all patients and staff.
The Universal Masking Policy requires all staff, patients, visitors and vendors within a Great Falls Clinic facility to wear a mask at all times.
Patient and Community Masking FAQ
Will Great Falls Clinic be providing me with a mask or do I have to bring my own?
• All visitors must check in upon entering a Great Falls Clinic facility. Once it has been confirmed that you are an eligible visitor, you will be given a mask to wear into the facility. If you have your own mask, please wear it when you visit so we can conserve our supplies for those that do not.
Do I only have to wear a mask in patient care areas?
• No, our new Universal Masking Policy requires every person within a Great Falls Clinic facility – staff, patients, visitors and vendors – to wear some type of face mask at all times, regardless of where you are in the center.
Why is Great Falls Clinic doing this now?
• We are following CDC guidance on universal masking to protect both our staff and patients from asymptomatic spread of COVID-19. We have shifted to a broader stance on infection prevention – including our masking policy – out of an abundance of caution and respect for the safety of our patients and staff.
How long will these changes in the visiting policy be in effect?
• Because this is a rapidly changing situation, we cannot predict how long these restrictions will remain in place. We will maintain them as long as necessary to protect our patients, visitors and staff.
VIDEO: Understanding COVID-19 and How to Stay Safe
Effective Wednesday, March 20, 2020:
The Great Falls Clinic is NO LONGER ALLOWING VISITORS so we can keep everyone as safe as possible and limit the spread of illness.
There are a few exceptions to this temporary policy:
Great Falls Clinic Hospital:
✅Parents/guardians accompanying minors seeking care
✅ End-of-life care situations; each case will be reviewed on a case by case basis with nurse manager and or administration and exceptions can be made.
✅ One essential* caregiver for Ancillary Services (Radiology, Lab)
✅ One essential* caregiver for Infusion, Radiation Oncology Visits
✅ One essential* caregiver for Emergency Room Visits
✅ One essential* caregiver for Inpatient Unit
✅ One essential* caregiver for Surgical Services, Cardiac Cath Lab and Interventional Radiology Procedures (includes Montana Plastic Surgery Center)
Great Falls Clinic (Main and Specialty Building, Northwest and Immediate Care):
✅ Parents/guardians accompanying minors seeking care
✅ One essential* caregiver for Ancillary Services (Radiology, Lab, Rehab Care)
✅ One essential* caregiver for essential Clinic Visits
✅ One essential* caregiver for essential Immediate Care Center Visits
* Essential caregivers include parents/guardians of minor patients, or caregivers assisting the elderly or people with disabilities.
PATIENT SAFETY IS OUR FIRST PRIORITY. DURING THIS TIME, WE WILL BE SEPARATING SICK PATIENTS FROM WELL PATIENTS. We want our patients to feel confident that we have patients in the right healthcare setting to promote patient safety across all areas.
PLEASE READ THE FOLLOWING INSTRUCTIONS.
- A 24/7 COVID-19 Helpline has been implemented. Please call ahead prior to visiting the Great Falls Clinic if you have fever, cough, and shortness of breath or have concerns you might have COVID-19.
- For questions related to COVID-19, please contact our helpline number at 406-454-7275. If phone lines are busy, patients are encouraged to leave a brief message with a call back number.
- We would like to ensure all departments within the Clinic are safe for normal visits and surgeries by maintaining a specific location for sick visits.
Effective Wednesday, March 18, 2020:
- All patients, visitors, vendors, and staff will be screened every day they enter the facility. All points of entry will be monitored and screened patients will be identified with a unique sticker each day to verify they have completed COVID-19 screening requirements at the door.
- 1 station at Main Campus, 1400 29th Street South
- 1 station at Hospital, 3010 15th Ave South
- 3 stations at Specialty Center, 3000 15th Ave South
- 1 station at Surgery Center, 1509 29th Street South
- 1 station at Montana Plastic Surgery Center, 1600 9th St South
- Patients who require, or will likely need, hospital care related to COVID-19 complaints will be directed to our Emergency Department, 3010 15th Ave South.
- We understand testing costs may prohibit some patients from being tested, therefore, we are reviewing all costs for testing patients when screening for COVID-19 and adjustments will be made and communicated with providers. We are working to lower these costs to accommodate during the pandemic. Some of those tests include influenza, respiratory viral panel, and COVID-19 testing. Most commercial insurances have communicated that testing for COVID-19 specifically will not have an out of pocket impact on patients. Patients should be encouraged to reach out to their insurance company for specific details regarding these costs.
- Visitors will be severely restricted in all settings and a policy will be presented with guidelines on the management of visitors.
- We have removed all reading material and coffee percolators from our waiting areas to reduce possible contaminants.
- We will work with all patients requesting to reschedule, please call us at 406-454-2171.
Tips for our patients
We encourage all patients to:
- Practice social distancing, avoid large social gathering. Instead order take-out or buy a restaurant gift card for future use if you want to support a local business. Many local shops are offering curbside pick-up!
- Bring your own reading material to your next doctor’s appointment.
- Leave space between yourself and those in the waiting areas or check-in lines.
- If you have a face mask at home, feel free to bring it.
- If you are worried about attending your appointment, call ahead and ask questions.
- Cough or sneeze into your elbow.
- Instead of a hug or a handshake, give a peace sign or a shoe-to-shoe tap.
- Wash your hands often and use hand sanitizer when you see it.
- Take care of yourself and your family.