CORONAVIRUS

Resources

Port Charlotte facility first in SWFL with wing dedicated to COVID-19 patients

Not everyone who tests positive for COVID-19 needs to stay in the hospital, but when a patient lives in a shared space, like a nursing home, sending them home to recover can get complicated.

One Southwest Florida facility is stepping up to protect some of the most vulnerable.

“These are challenging times. With that said, it is also a time where our communities are in need of a ‘partner’ and a ‘provider’ to fight, treat, educate, and prevent the spread of the coronavirus,” sad Jason Canlas, regional vice president of Clear Choice Health Care.

Canlas, who represents the Port Charlotte Rehab Center, said they based the decision to open to COVID-positive patients on a need in the community.

“Statewide, there are very few who are willing or who have the ability to take on the challenges of managing, treating, and rehabilitating patients infected with the coronavirus.”

The facility, the first in our area to create a COVID-19 dedicated wing, has space for 39 positive patients.

“The unit also has dedicated infection control sterilization rooms, PPE rooms, separate entrance and exit, separate ventilation system, the state of the art ultraviolet light disinfectant system…”

Experts say the move will likely save lives.

“Those folks still need to be isolated if they’re COVID positive. And so if a facility is incapable of doing that, then we need to transfer those residents to places that can,” said Gov. Ron DeSantis.

“By developing a COVID area, or particular region within that facility, they’re going to be able to keep patients in a more confined area and then try to reduce any possible spread of the virus to patients that don’t have it within the facilities,” said Robert Hawkes, director of the Florida Gulf Coast University physician assistant program.

Hawkes expects more facilities to follow suit.

“As we move forward, it’s probably going to start becoming more of a norm.”

Full statement from Clear Choice Health Care on the COVID-19 wing:

“These are challenging times. With that said, it is also a time where our communities are in need of a ‘partner’ and a ‘provider’ to fight, treat, educate, and prevent the spread of the coronavirus. 

“Statewide, there are very few who are willing or who have the ability to take on the challenges of managing, treating, and rehabilitating patients infected with the coronavirus. In early March, when the pandemic was starting to unfold, Port Charlotte rehab took a proactive approach to combating the virus; infection control precautions, PPE requirements, strict employee and visitor screenings, limited and later restricted visitations, etc. Through communications with AHCA, the DOH, and listening to the needs of our communities it was evident there would be a need for a dedicated unit.

“Port Charlotte Rehab has opened a new unit of 39 private rooms dedicated to clinical and rehabilitation management of the coronavirus. The unit also has dedicated infection control sterilization rooms, PPE rooms, separate entrance and exit, separate ventilation system, the state of the art ultraviolet light disinfectant systems, etc.

“This unit has not only served our local community, but we continue to receive calls from hospitals throughout SWFL and beyond. 

“Knowing the need for a dedicated unit AND knowing the many complications of COVID19, it is ESSENTIAL we thank, praise, and recognize the tireless and heroic efforts of the employees at Port Charlotte Rehab. These health care heroes complete a monumental task every day, putting their own lives at risk (many who have their own families),  to help our patients be able to return safely to the community and back to normal life!”

Reporter:Veronica Marshall
Writer:Jackie Winchester
Do you see a typo or an error? Let us know.
SHARE