*If you are a patient who plans to be seen at one of our facilities, please contact your provider for detailed instructions prior to visiting one of our locations.
A cloth face covering should be worn whenever people must go into public settings. Please wear one when coming to the hospital, your doctor’s office, or other public places such as grocery stores or pharmacies.
In light of new data about how COVID-19 spreads, along with evidence of widespread COVID-19 illness in communities across the country, the CDC recommends that people wear a cloth face covering to cover their nose and mouth while in community settings.
This is an additional public health measure people should take to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in addition to (not instead of) social distancing, frequent hand cleaning and other everyday preventive actions. A cloth face covering is not intended to protect the wearer, but may prevent the spread of virus from the wearer to others. This would be especially important in the event that someone is infected but does not have symptoms.
It is not recommended that you wear medical masks and N-95 respirators which the CDC recommends should be reserved for healthcare workers and other first responders.
At Care New England, we understand that having supportive family or friends present benefits the health and well-being of our patients. Our care teams must balance that benefit with the science of preventing the spread of coronavirus. For the safety of our patients, families, staff, and the greater community, Care New England has adopted the guidance below for safe visitation. Visitation looks different at each of our unique hospitals, due to the difference in patient populations served and the physical spaces to provide social distancing.
While there are many ongoing studies for ways to prevent or treat COVID19, none have been found effective. The NIH Guidelines panel recommends only to use treatments when you are part of a clinical research study.
The key points of the report are:
This virus probably originally emerged from an animal source but now is spreading from person-to-person. Most often this happens among close contacts (about 6 feet). Person-to-person spread is thought to occur mainly via respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes, similar to how influenza and other respiratory pathogens spread. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs. It’s currently unclear if a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes. Typically, with most respiratory viruses, people are thought to be most contagious when they are most symptomatic (the sickest), but data suggests that people may be able to spread coronavirus when they have few or NO symptoms. This spread can occur from droplets that one exhales or emits into the atmosphere when breathing or sneezing. This form of transmission is the reason that the CDC now recommends use of non-medical face masks to decrease the spread of the virus from people who have no symptoms.
It may also be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object, like a table top or packaging container, that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes. In general, because of poor survivability of the virus on many surfaces, there is likely very low risk of spread from food products or packaging. Nevertheless, it is always recommended that you wash your hands after touching surfaces, and that you do so after unpacking and disposing of food packaging.