SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — Mercy Hospital’s goal behind its new “COVID care at home” program is to help patients not battle the virus alone.
Melissa McGinnis, a hospitalist physician at Mercy, said their free virtual care program is five years old.
“This virtual program allows us to monitor patients at home and through video, through phone, through frequent check-ups,” said McGinnis.
This program will help with Mercy’s bed capicity limit struggle.
“We have a wide range of patients from very ill, meaning ICU and intubation to ill and feeling ill but maybe they don’t need to be in the hospital,” said McGinnis. “So we started looking at the virtual as a way to bridge that gap to help keep patients out of the hospital unnecesarily.”
McGinnis says this program will help people feel less afraid if they test positive for COVID-19.
“This one-on-one care from the comfort of your home, not having to worry about going to the ER, going to the COVID floors, but knowing you’re still getting adequate care and someone is watching you closely to know when to say ‘okay, it’s time for you to see one of our ER physicians,'” said McGinnis.
Doctors and nurses in St. Louis will facilitate the program and talk to patients all over the state. KOLR10 reached out to Mercy Hospital St. Louis, but they were unavailable.