COVID-19-Only Hospital Closing
This action is being taken as the pandemic enters a new phase.
After almost a year of exceptional work in battling COVID-19 at the Green Valley campus, Cone Health is now able to begin the process of closing this site and transitioning care to four other hospital campuses. This closure will occur on March 5.
After this time, people with COVID-19 needing to be in a hospital will be cared for in Alamance Regional Medical Center, Annie Penn Hospital, Moses Cone Hospital and Wesley Long Hospital. COVID-19 units have been set up in those hospitals to ensure safe and specific care, as modeled by the work done at Green Valley campus. COVID-19 testing and an infusion clinic, where monoclonal antibodies are used to keep people with COVID-19 from developing severe forms of the disease, will remain at the site.
“We certainly don’t want people to get the wrong impression that the pandemic is over. It is not time to throw away the masks. While we are in a different situation from one year ago, we must continue to remain vigilant in all our efforts to prevent the spread of this dangerous disease,” says Mary Jo Cagle, MD, chief operating officer, Cone Health.
Increased wearing of masks, staying away from one another and frequently washing hands is widely credited as playing a major role in reducing the number of people needing hospital care with COVID-19. The increasing availability of vaccine for people 65 and older and those most likely to develop severe forms of COVID-19 will also lower the number of people needing hospital care in the weeks and months ahead.
After Women’s Hospital moved out of the site a year ago, the facility was quickly outfitted as a COVID-19 only facility to handle an expected rise in people needing ventilators and intensive care. The 116-bed facility opened April 13 and became the centerpiece of Cone Health’s response to the pandemic, especially as the number of patients climbed in the fall and early this year.
“That building was a godsend,” says Brent McQuaid, MD, chief medical officer, Green Valley campus. “By putting most of our COVID-19 patients in one building, we were able to use less PPE when it was hard to get. We also became real experts at treating COVID-19. Many of the lessons learned are allowing us to close the inpatient facility.”
More than 4,700 people with COVID-19 have been treated at Cone Health. Most of them were cared for at Green Valley campus.
“I am so thankful that we were able to save many, many lives here. I am proud of the work of our team, and this team will continue to provide exceptional care at our other hospitals,” says McQuaid. “But I am always mindful of the many people we lost here. Please adhere to the 3Ws and get the vaccine when offered. Closing the Green Valley campus is another step on the journey to the pandemic’s end. But we aren’t there yet.”