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Clinical Operations Latest Updates
7.26.2021 at 5:08 am: Reminder: New COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement
Last week, DUHS leadership shared this update with all team members regarding COVID-19 vaccination requirements for staff. Consistent with our values and commitment to zero harm for our patients and team, Duke University Health System (DUHS) has revised our COVID-19 vaccination requirements. All team members, regardless of work location, must receive and show documentation of their completed COVID-19 vaccination(s) by 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 21, 2021.
The new mandatory COVID vaccination policy does allow limited exemptions. Team members seeking approved medical or religious exemptions are encouraged to submit their application as soon as possible and must submit their application by Tuesday, Sept. 7, 2021. Application forms are available here and take about one week to process.
As a reminder, this FAQ provides answers to common questions from our team members about this update. Please note that the last day to begin vaccination with the Pfizer vaccination series and still be compliant with this policy is Sept. 3. If you have not begun your vaccination series by Sept. 3, you will need to receive the Johnson and Johnson vaccine to be compliant with this policy.
Please visit our website for more information about the vaccine and DUHS requirements. Additional resources include frequently asked questions and hours of operation for our employee vaccination clinics. Thank you for taking this important step to keep yourself, your families, our patients and communities safe.
7.20.2021 at 2:01 pm: Postponing Tier 2 of Reopening Guidelines & Visitor Restrictions
At Duke Health, our priority remains the safety and well-being of our patients, their loved ones and each other. We are committed to implementing the best practices to keep everyone safe and reduce the spread of infection.
In light of recent COVID-19 trends within the community and in our inpatient populations, we will postpone the move to tier 2 of our re-opening guidelines and continue observing the safety protocols currently in place. Please note that this also means we will not implement the proposed changes to our current visitor restrictions which were set to take effect on Wednesday, July 21, 2021.
While we are in the "moderate risk" window of the newly developed tier 2 criteria as explained in yesterday's communication, we are seeing a trend of increased cases of COVID-19, including the Delta variant, and increased admissions throughout the system. We believe it is important to observe these trends and postpone all changes to our safety protocols in place.
As a reminder, all of our current visitor restrictions are available on DukeHealth.org.
7.19.2021 at 5:09 am: Reopening Guidelines & Updated Visitor Restrictions
Throughout our COVID-19 response, we have appropriately adjusted our policies and procedures in response to the presence of infection in our community, vaccination rates and availability of PPE. After consulting with our infectious disease experts and coordinating with our leaders and team members from across all of our entities, we have developed these reopening guidelines to direct key safety protocols moving forward.
These guidelines will help us respond to infectious diseases or other potential issues that may require us to strengthen our safety practices. Please note that we will provide broad communication any time we need to transition from one tier to another, and these guidelines may be adjusted to respond to our current safety needs.
Effective July 21, 2021, we will officially move our procedures to align with tier 2 of these guidelines.
At Duke Health, we recognize that our patients' loved ones are an essential part of the care team. During each phase of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have adjusted our operations to protect the safety of our patients, visitors and team members. This remains our top priority.
Part of adjusting our response to align with tier 2 of these reopening guidelines means we will also adjust our visitation practices. To communicate this update to our patients and visitors, please refer to these talking points and patient letter.
In most cases, this will mean that inpatients can have multiple visitors on a rotating basis instead of being required to designate visitors for their entire length of stay. This will require all visitors in our hospitals to check out before leaving the campus so that others may visit. Updated visitation hours will be from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. every day.
Thank you for your patience and understanding as we make important changes together to enhance the care of our patients, their loved ones and each other.
6.28.2021 at 5:03 am: Reminder: Masks Remain Required in Healthcare Settings
As a reminder, no changes have been made to our masking requirements for patients, visitors or team members. We continue to follow CDC guidance and NC DHHS mandates that require masking in healthcare settings.
This sign is available to remind everyone of our masking requirements, even if they are vaccinated. These talking points are available to communicate with patients and visitors, and they include a standard response for any patients or visitors who are not following our universal masking policy.
We continue to encourage team members to get vaccinated and will continue to re-evaluate our guidance as necessary.
6.21.2021 at 5:10 am: Closure of COVID-19 Testing Tents
We are committed to appropriately adjusting our policies, procedures and available services as we experience decreased community spread of COVID-19, increased vaccination rates and adequate supplies of appropriate PPE to keep our patients and staff safe. Since we are experiencing significantly lower volumes of tests needed for our patients, we will close our dedicated COVID-19 testing tents at Duke Raleigh Hospital on June 22 and on Willard Street on June 29. Effective tomorrow, we will begin offering COVID-19 testing at other Duke Health locations.
This document includes more information about these locations including hours of operation, target populations and scheduling instructions. Team members, patients and members of our community should continue to call the COVID-19 hotline to schedule an appointment for COVID-19 testing if they are experiencing related symptoms or have been exposed to the virus. The Duke Health COVID-19 hotline is available for team members from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. at 919-385-0429, option 1. Team members who have urgent after-hours concerns should call the Blood and Body Fluids (BBF) Hotline at 919-684-8115.
As a reminder, receiving your COVID-19 vaccine and using recommended PPE provide the greatest level of protection for our team members. We feel confident that our team members can continue to provide excellent care and conduct COVID-19 testing safely in our other locations by following our existing guidance on recommended PPE.
6.14.2021 at 5:03 am: REMINDER: Discontinuing Pre-Operative and Pre-Procedural COVID-19 Testing Effective Today
Effective today, pre-operative and pre-procedural COVID-19 testing will be discontinued for both adult and pediatric patients as follows:
- Current outpatients who are not anticipated to be admitted to an inpatient unit or have an overnight stay no longer require pre-operative/pre-procedure testing.
- Current outpatients who are anticipated to be admitted to an inpatient unit or have an overnight stay still require pre-operative testing to meet the current requirement for universal COVID-19 testing of all hospitalized patients.
- Current inpatients who have already had COVID-19 testing performed upon hospital admission no longer require pre-operative/pre-procedural testing. All patients will continue to be screened for COVID-19 signs/symptoms or exposure upon arrival to a DUHS facility. Symptomatic patients should continue to be placed in isolation and tested per our existing infection prevention and testing guidelines.
These changes were made in light of increased COVID-19 vaccination rates, increased availability of N95 respirators, decreased community incidence of COVID-19 infections and decreased COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths. These FAQs provide a refresher about how and when to use and re-use N95 respirators in peri-operative and procedures spaces. We feel confident that DUHS team members can continue to provide care safely by using existing guidance on recommended PPE for the management of asymptomatic patients for the high-risk aerosol-generating procedures.
6.1.2021 at 5:09 am: Discontinuing Pre-Operative and Pre-Procedural COVID-19 Testing
In light of increased COVID-19 vaccination rates, increased availability of N95 respirators, decreased community incidence of COVID-19 infections and decreased COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths, we will discontinue pre-procedure and pre-operative COVID-19 testing in June for patients not requiring admission.
Effective today, only gastroenterology pre-operative and pre-procedural COVID-19 testing will be discontinued. Effective Monday, June 14, all other pre-operative and pre-procedural COVID-19 testing will be discontinued as well. This FAQ document provides a refresher about how and when to use and re-use N95 respirators in peri-operative and procedures spaces.
At this time, the following patients will still require pre-operative/pre-procedural testing:
- Patients who will have an anticipated overnight stay after their surgery or procedure will still require pre-procedural testing
- Patients staying overnight for CPAP titration studies in the sleep lab
Vaccination and use of recommended PPE provide the greatest level of protection for our team members. We feel confident that DUHS team members can continue to provide care safely by using existing guidance on recommended PPE for management of asymptomatic patients for the high-risk aerosol-generating procedures.
At this time, we are continuing admission testing for several reasons, including:
- A significantly longer duration of time for a potential exposure to occur (inpatient area vs. peri-op)
- The potential for aerosol-generating procedures (such as overnight CPAP or BiPAP) to occur during which team members don’t wear N95 respirators
- Shared rooms on some units within DUHS entities
- Congregate living and the inability to mask in behavioral health inpatient areas
5.24.2021 at 5:27 am: Duke COVID-19 Hotline Updates
With the decreasing rate of COVID-19 infection and increasing rate of vaccination in our community, we are seeing a lower volume of calls to the Duke COVID-19 hotline. Beginning June 1, we will adjust the hotline's hours of operation for patients and members of our community. Below is the full list of hours of operation for our COVID-19 hotline effective June 1.
- Employee Hotline: 8 a.m. – 6 p.m., 7 days a week | For urgent after-hours concerns, please call the Blood and Body Fluids (BBF) Hotline at 919-684-8115.
- Vaccine Hotline: 8 a.m. – 6 p.m., Monday – Saturday
- Patient Hotline: 8 a.m. – 6 p.m., Monday – Saturday | There will remain an option to reach Nurse Triage from 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. in the evenings and on Sundays from 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. for symptomatic and exposed patients
- Student Hotline: 8 a.m. – 8 p.m., 7 days a week
- Asymptomatic Testing Hotline: 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday – Saturday
5.24.2021 at 5:12 am: Moments to Movement Anniversary Events Tomorrow
At Duke Health, we have always drawn strength from our diversity, but we also recognize that we must do more. This is why our initiative is rooted in acknowledging the importance of going beyond passive moments of reflection and becoming more active as we build a movement to make lasting change.
Throughout the day tomorrow, we will hold events at many of our entities to join together in observance of this important day and reflect upon our progress and prepare us for the work to come. We encourage you to participate in your entity’s event, if possible, or join one of the many virtual options available.
To continue moving forward with this initiative, we need support from every single team member. Thank you for your commitment to create an inclusive and equitable culture at Duke Health. Our collective beliefs and behaviors will make a difference in our organization, our community and all of those we serve.
5.17.2021 at 5:08 am: Guidelines for Duke-sponsored Meetings & Conferences
We're proud to see more members of our team step up to be vaccinated against COVID-19. We're also excited to see the decreased spread of infection in our community. Widespread vaccination has proven to significantly reduce the number of positive cases of COVID-19 on campus and in the community. With this continued progress, we have appropriately revised our DUHS guidelines for Duke-sponsored meetings and conferences.
At this time, we still encourage you to host any meetings or events virtually when possible. Sponsors of any event or meeting should encourage all attendees to be vaccinated but not explicitly ask about vaccination status among attendees. Please note that these guidelines are consistent with the recently updated Duke policy.
Thank you for continuing to practice healthy behaviors to prevent the spread of infection while we properly adjust our recommendations to keep everyone safe.
5.14.2021 at 12:00 pm: Masks still required in healthcare settings for all people
The CDC update on May 13, 2021 states that fully vaccinated people may resume most activities without wearing a mask or physically distancing, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal or territorial laws, rules and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.
Please note that this update does not apply to the healthcare setting, and no changes have been made to the masking policies for DUHS patients, visitors or team members as of now. We remind everyone on our campuses of our mandatory masking requirements, even if they are vaccinated. We continue to encourage team members to get vaccinated and will continue to re-evaluate our guidance as necessary.
5.10.2021 at 5:06 am: Recommendations for Patients Admitted from Congregate Living Facilities
To reflect changes in the epidemiology of SARS-CoV-2 and increased COVID-19 vaccination rates, patients admitted from congregate living facilities (e.g., nursing homes, prisons) no longer require Special Droplet/Contact precautions for the first 14 days of admission.
These documents have been updated to reflect this change:
- Guidance for De-escalating Isolation after a Negative Test for COVID-19
- Maestro Care Update for Exposure to COVID-19 Status
The DUHS Inmate Patient PPE Guidelines document has been updated on the Secure Policy Center. Please note that at this time, the following recommendations have not changed:
- All testing guidance (e.g., admission, transfer, pre-procedural) remains the same.
- Team members will continue to wear masks and eye protection for all patient care encounters.
- Patients with a known exposure to SARS-CoV-2 require Special Droplet/Contact precautions for the first 14 days of admission.
5.3.2021 at 5:01 am: Updated Masking Guidance for Outside
Effective immediately, Duke University, Duke University Health System and PDC will not require masks outside, with the exception of crowded outdoor areas where social distancing is not possible. Please have your mask on hand for these situations. Masks or face coverings will still be required in shared spaces inside Duke University and PDC-owned or leased buildings and on Duke transportation buses.
This modification to our requirements is informed by new guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and the latest executive order issued by N.C. Governor Roy Cooper. This change includes all students, faculty, staff and visitors, regardless of vaccination status. While not common, fully vaccinated members of the Duke community have tested positive for COVID-19 in situations involving close and sustained contact indoors without a mask.
We urge everyone to become vaccinated. Vaccination and masking are the most effective means of protecting yourself and others from COVID-19 and will be key to getting us beyond this pandemic. Vaccines can be obtained at no cost through the Duke Employee Vaccination Clinic.
5.3.2021 at 5:04 am: On-Campus Team Member and Student Vaccinations Set to Move to Karsh Alumni Center Effective May 19
Effective May 19, all team member and student COVID-19 vaccinations set for administration on Duke's campus will move from the Duke Blue Devil Tower to the Karsh Alumni Center. The last day for vaccinations at the Blue Devil Tower will take place on May 18.
5.3.2021 at 5:02 am: All Duke Hospitals Receive "A" Grades from The Leapfrog Group
The Leapfrog Group awarded top “A" grades to Duke Raleigh Hospital, Duke University Hospital and Duke Regional Hospital on its Spring 2021 report card. This honorable distinction reflects our health system’s unwavering commitment to providing safe, quality care to our patients. Making the list is especially notable during this past year of unprecedented challenges related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Duke Quality Management System is a critical priority for our health system's operations to protect the safety of our team members, patients and their loved ones. Our focus on safety remained vigilant throughout our COVID-19 response, and everyone in our organization plays a vital role in our commitment to zero harm.
The Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade uses up to 27 measures of publicly available hospital safety data to assign grades to more than 2,700 U.S. acute-care hospitals twice per year. The grade is based on a hospital's performance preventing medical errors, injuries, accidents, infections and other harms to patients in their care.
4.28.2021 at 3:34 pm: Nursing Town Hall Cancelled
Please note that the nursing leadership town hall planned for tomorrow, April 29, has been cancelled.
4.26.2021 at 5:12 am: CARE hub's Wall of Analytics Reaches Over 1,000 Users
Last week, the CARE hub program reached a milestone of more than one thousand users of the Wall of Analytics. This innovative tool allows users to access Tiles that display real-time data about our inpatients and available resources. We are proud of the CARE hub team for supporting our health system with the Capacity, Access and Real-time Engagement we need to ensure that the right patients are receiving the right care at the right time. As a reminder, you must be on the Duke network to access the Wall of Analytics by logging in using your Duke NetID. On the Wall of Analytics, you can view the available Tiles. Check out this one-minute video that explains more about our CARE hub and how this program is enhancing patients’ access to our services and improving their experience.
4.26.2021 at 5:08 am: COVID-19 Vaccination Walk-In Clinics
Thank you to all of our team members who coordinated walk-in hours at our COVID-19 vaccination clinic at the Wheels Fun Park. We're proud to share that during just the first day of walk-in hours, we were able to vaccinate over 500 members of our community, including many from our underserved populations. Tomorrow and Thursday, we will hold walk-in hours again from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the Wheels Fun Park. We will also hold walk-in hours at Karsh Alumni Center on Wednesday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. During these hours, we are accepting walk-ins for community members who would like to receive their first COVID-19 vaccine (Pfizer). No appointment is necessary during this timeframe. The vaccine is available at no cost to all people age 16 and older. Encourage your friends and family members to receive the vaccine during these walk-in hours!
4.15.2021 at 5:13 am: Updated Employee Screening Process Effective Monday, April 19
Effective Monday, April 19, all team members will no longer be required to complete health screening questions before entering a DUHS or PDC facility. Team members will still be required to sanitize their hands upon entry, put on a new Duke-approved mask and wear their identification badge to enter the facility through a designated employee entrance.
We need your help to keep everyone safe – please do not come to work if you are not feeling well or if you have potentially been exposed to COVID-19. As part of our employment policy, team members who are feeling ill are not permitted to report to work. If you feel ill, are experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19 or have potentially been exposed to the virus, stay home and call the Duke COVID-19 Employee Hotline (919-385-0429, option 1). The hotline is open every day from 8 a.m. – 6 p.m.
With this update to our screening process, we will no longer require any team members to use the Duke HealthCheck mobile app or browser log in. We will also no longer require team members to complete a health log every day. While using the HealthCheck app is no longer required for team members to enter the facility, we encourage you to continue to use the app to monitor your symptoms.
To ensure the safety and security of our environments, it is essential that our team members not permit patients or visitors to come in through our employee entrances. Wear your ID badge between your shoulder and waist with the photo side facing out at all times. When entering our facilities, make sure to not hold open the door for others who have not been properly screened.
4.12.2021 at 5:05 am: Over 200,000 COVID-19 Vaccines Administered
Last week, Duke Health reached a significant milestone of over 200,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine administered. We're proud of our entire team for their hard work to reach this remarkable achievement.
4.12.2021 at 5:02 am: Team Member Vaccination Status Reference
With the increased availability of the vaccine, we have received reports of more patients asking our team members about their personal vaccination status. Please keep in mind that our team members are not required to reveal their personal vaccination status, or the vaccination status of another team member, if a patient asks. Here are a few suggested responses you may use as a reference if a patient asks you to reveal your vaccination status or the vaccination status of a colleague.
4.5.2021 at 5:12 am: Updated Patient Card for Vaccination Appointment
This week, we are contacting all of our patients and community members who are age 16 and older to notify them that they are eligible for vaccination starting Wednesday, April 7 based on the NC DHHS plan for vaccine distribution. Patients and community members are required to schedule an appointment to receive their COVID-19 vaccination. This instructional card is available for providers to use with patients they are strongly advising to be vaccinated and who are currently eligible for vaccination.
4.5.2021 at 5:09 am: Updated Recommended PPE for Managing Outpatients
We have revised this table in the following ways: We updated the language around eye protection recommendations for direct patient care (Note: No changes have been made in this recommendation; we are simply updating this table to coincide with the guidance already released.) We removed the column with “test/no-test,” as all PPE recommendations were updated to reflect the highest level of PPE for high-risk situations, regardless of test result. A new table on page 3 contains PPE recommendations for the care of patients with suspected or known active COVID-19 infection.
3.29.2021 at 5:12 am: Symptoms of COVID-19 vs. Seasonal Allergies
Because vaccination is so highly protective against severe COVID-19, it is plausible to think that the vaccinated individuals who become infected with COVID-19 may be more likely to present with milder symptoms that could be confused with seasonal allergies.
We learned last year when COVID-19 hit, and vaccination was not yet an option, that many COVID-19 infected team members had relatively mild infections. Last March and April, several team members initially attributed mild upper respiratory symptoms to seasonal allergies and later tested positive for COVID-19 after coming to work with symptoms. Healthcare worker to healthcare worker transmissions occurred as a result of these exposures in the workplace. We aim to prevent healthcare transmission events.
As such, we recommend that, regardless of vaccination status, Duke Health team members who experience new or worsening symptoms that may be attributed to seasonal allergies to still get tested for COVID-19 and remain at home until they receive confirmation of a negative test. If the test is negative and allergy symptoms persist as normal, you do not need to get tested every week unless there is some other indication, such as the development of new symptoms or worsening symptoms from baseline.
As a reminder, the symptoms of COVID-19 and allergies are not the same, though many of them do overlap. The figure below outlines the most common symptoms associated with each condition, based on CDC guidance.
3.29.2021 at 5:07 am: Updated Hours for Team Member COVID-19 Hotline
With the decreasing rate of COVID-19 infection and increasing rate of vaccination in our Duke community, we are seeing a lower volume of calls on the hotline in the evenings. Starting April 1, the Duke COVID-19 Employee Hotline (919-385-0429, option 1) will be available from 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. every day for employees. For urgent after-hours concerns, please call the Blood and Body Fluids (BBF) Hotline at 919-684-8115.
3.22.2021 at 5:03 am: N95 Respirator Processing Update
As we celebrate having safely decontaminated over 100,000 N95 respirators, we have made great progress in obtaining improved product commitments for certified N95 respirators, which, combined with our existing stock of new, unused respirators, positions us to be able to suspend N95 reprocessing. These decontamination efforts have been an integral part of our COVID-19 PPE response and we appreciate all of the participation to make this strategy successful.
As we suspend this process, please remember that it is important to continue to conserve this resource through our existing reuse and extended use PPE efforts. Over the next few days, new N95s will be provided and we will discontinue collection of used N95s. Any previously decontaminated masks still in your possession remain safe to use but should be discarded after their next use. We will continue to closely monitor our supply and use of all PPE and adjust as needed to ensure that we are always putting your safety first.
3.8.2021 at 5:20 am: Updated Patient & Community Members Vaccination Talking Points
These updated talking points should be used to help answer questions from patients and the community about the COVID-19 vaccination. They have recently been updated to address questions regarding the safety of the vaccines, how to join our vaccination waiting list and why the choice of vaccine is limited given the short supply.
3.8.2021 at 5:01 am: Team Member Vaccination Options & Eligibility Update
Given the state's recent transition to activate Group 3 of its distribution plan, we are working to schedule appointments for everyone who is now eligible for vaccination. This group also includes many of our colleagues who work with the University, and Employee Health is continuing to reach out to these team members to schedule their appointments for vaccination. Depending on available vaccination supply, we are now providing the Moderna or Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines for team members. Both of these vaccines require two doses for full effect. The Moderna vaccine doses are given 28 days apart, and the Pfizer vaccine doses are given 21 days apart. We will provide only one vaccine type each day and do not know in advance which vaccination will be available. Given the limited supply, team members will not receive a choice of which vaccine they will receive. When you arrive for your first dose appointment, you will be advised of the specific vaccine we are administering. We will ensure that you will have a second dose of the same vaccine type.
3.1.2021 at 5:17 am: Maestro Care Tip Sheet: Adding People to Vaccine Waiting List
The wait list feature is used to keep track of patients who need an appointment. This Maestro Care tip sheet provides instructions for adding patients to the waitlist who qualify for a COVID vaccine, but who we are unable to schedule. Do not add patients to the wait list if they do not meet the current qualifications to receive the vaccine.
3.1.2021 at 5:03 am: J&J Vaccine Received Emergency Use Authorization by FDA
Last week, a key Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advisory panel voted to recommend approval of the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use. After reviewing J&J's clinical trial data and offering their opinions on the vaccine, the Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee recommended authorization for people age 18 and older, and the agency issued Emergency Use Authorization on Saturday. The committee assessed that the vaccine is safe and effective. While the overall efficacy rate for protecting against COVID-19 is reported to be lower than Pfizer's and Moderna's vaccines, it is important to note that the J&J vaccine was 100% effective at preventing virus-related hospitalizations and deaths in its late-stage trial. At Duke Health, our top priority remains the health and safety of our patients, their loved ones and each other. Our planning team has been diligently coordinating with the state and developing the proper preparations in anticipation of receiving this vaccine. As this vaccine only requires one dose and can be stored for months at refrigerator temperatures, we are considering the great impact this may have in easing our logistics for vaccinating patients and community members.
2.24.2021 at 10:20 am: Schedule Your Screening Mammogram Around Your COVID-19 Vaccine
Many team members and patients have reported swollen lymph nodes following COVID-19 vaccination. Please keep in mind that this side effect is possible with many vaccines and more common following COVID-19 vaccination. This a sign that your body is developing an immune response to your vaccine. To learn more, view this blog post.
2.22.2021 at 5:14 am: Updates on Team Member Vaccination Eligibility Process
In an effort to streamline requests for team member vaccinations, a central collection form has been created to capture and catalog requests for COVID-19 vaccination eligibility review. If you feel you meet the current eligibility criteria for vaccination (direct in-person patient contact, working with COVID-19 samples or age 65 or older), and have not received your vaccination invitation, please fill out this form. Please note that eligible new hires do not need to be submitted as they are routinely being reviewed and submitted. Submissions will be reviewed for eligibility and responded to within three business days. Please note that approval and submission of eligible employees to the NC DHHS may be delayed by several weeks. Team members should watch for an email invitation from Duke Employee Health outlining the process for making a vaccination appointment.
2.22.2021 at 5:07 am: 100K COVID-19 Vaccinations Administered
We’re celebrating a special milestone this week. Since the COVID-19 vaccine became available in December, Duke Health has given more than 100,000 doses to our patients, community and team members. That represents a remarkable achievement in our work to slow or eliminate this pandemic. Our COVID-19 journey continues, but we are optimistic about what the future holds. The vaccine marks a real turning point, and we are excited to be part of this work. Thank you for being part of our efforts.
2.15.2021 at 5:29 am: Safety Protocols Remain in Place
The COVID-19 vaccine is one more way to stay safe. Getting vaccinated and following other simple healthy behaviors like wearing a mask and washing your hands is the best way to stay healthy. Even as our patients, visitors and team members continue to receive vaccinations, everyone must still follow all of the safety protocols we have in place to prevent the spread of infection. This sign has been developed to remind everyone to continue completing health screenings, masking, maintaining distance from others and washing or sanitizing their hands.
2.15.2021 at 5:15 am: Vaccination Distribution Update: Transition to Group 3
Last week, Gov. Cooper and NC DHHS Secretary Mandy Cohen announced that Group 3 frontline essential workers will be eligible for vaccination in the coming weeks. Given the many individuals included in this group, the state plans to move to the next group gradually. Those working in PreK-12 childcare and schools – such as teachers, bus and van drivers, custodial and maintenance staff and food service workers – will be eligible first, beginning Feb. 24. All other frontline essential workers, such as police officers, firefighters and grocery workers, will have to wait until March 10 to start getting vaccinated. Group 3 could be further subdivided in the coming weeks, depending on the flow of vaccine into the state. This handout is available to provide to patients and community members for more information about this transition.
2.10.2021 at 2:15 pm: Research Study Available: Perspective of US Health Care Workers diagnosed with COVID-19
Physicians, nurses, nurse aides, NPs, OT, OTA, PT, PTA, PA, SW, respiratory therapists, speech therapists and technicians who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 are now eligible to participate in this survey. The study is titled: “Perspective of US Health Care Workers diagnosed with COVID-19," and the purpose is to investigate the perspective of US healthcare workers mentioned above. We appreciate you taking time to complete survey. Participation is voluntary and you may discontinue the survey at any time. Researchers will not have access to your name/answers. Participation is confidential. Research is approved by American International College IRB office. Contact Dr. Said Nafai, lead researcher, at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like a summary of the results or have any questions.
2.10.2021 at 2:10 pm: Research Study Available: Center for Advanced Hindsight at Duke University and the Duke Center for Antimicrobial Stewardship and Infection Prevention
researchers from the Center for Advanced Hindsight at Duke University and the Duke Center for Antimicrobial Stewardship and Infection Prevention, studying how to make our response to the COVID-19 pandemic more effective. We'd like to invite you to participate in a 10-minute survey to assess possible messaging campaigns around the COVID-19 vaccine. Your answers could help us shape our vaccine outreach in the future. Your participation is entirely voluntary. In return for participation, you may opt to enter a drawing to win 1 of 5 gift packs containing a water bottle, face mask, and light fleece jacket with the Duke Center for Antimicrobial Stewardship and Infection Prevention's petri dish logo. If you're interested, please click here to complete the survey. If you have any questions about the survey or your participation, email email@example.com.
2.8.2021 at 5:06 am: Keep It Up – Decrease of Employee Infection Rates
Since we started vaccinating our team members, there has been a significant decrease (> 75%) in the number of employee infections. While this is indeed wonderful news, it is also important to realize that COVID-19 is still with us and vaccination is not 100% protective. We can’t afford to let down our guard, especially with the presence of highly transmissible variant strains showing up throughout the country.
2.8.2021 at 5:01 am: Appointments Required for Vaccination – Appointment Card Available
All team members, patients and community members are required to have an appointment for their vaccination. We appreciate everyone's excitement to receive the vaccine, but please remember that walking up to a clinic to request vaccination is not permitted. This instructional card is available for providers to use with patients they are strongly advising to be vaccinated and who are currently eligible for vaccination.
2.3.2021 at 5:02 am: Double Masking Optional for Team Members, Patients & Visitors
As we strive to continuously update our COVID-19 guidance to keep in step with the scientific community, we updated masking guidance language as follows. We will continue to closely monitor COVID-19 infections among team members and, should we see any concerning trends or signals, will reevaluate our recommendations below: Double masking is optional for patients, visitors and Duke team members at this time. However, we do encourage team members to make simple mask modifications to improve fit, and thereby improve source control. More tips to make your mask fit better are available on the Infection Prevention webpage.
For patients and visitors: Patients and visitors will be offered a Duke-issued medical mask when entering the healthcare space. If the patient or visitor is wearing their own mask, they may place the Duke-issued mask over the top of their mask if they choose. Patients and visitors may wear their own masks as long as they adequately cover the mouth and nose and have ties or earloops. Patients and visitors may not wear neck gaiters or bandanas. Patients and visitors may not wear any mask with an exhalation valve. Simple mask modifications can be made to help improve fit, if needed. Review a full list of our patient and visitor masking guidelines.
For Duke team members: Duke team members are still required to wear a Duke-issued medical mask in the healthcare setting. Should team members choose to wear a second mask, they may place a Duke-issued mask over the top of their own mask. Simple mask modifications can be made to help improve fit, if needed. Wearing the Duke-issued medical mask as the outer layer provides a fluid-resistant barrier. We continue to recommend eye protection during patient care activities. Review a full list of our team member masking guidelines.
2.1.2021 at 5:12 am: Increased Access at Monoclonal Antibody Infusion Sites
Our Duke Infusion Center Southpoint now provides a limited supply of Emergency Use Authorized (EUA) monoclonal antibody infusions to outpatients with mild to moderate COVID-19 infection. This clinic now has increased access for patients who fit eligibility criteria. This document includes the eligibility criteria and process for providing these products to patients.
2.1.2021 at 5:09 am: Updated N95 Decontamination Information
Recently, the FDA granted Emergency Use Authorizations (EUAs) for all authorized Bioquell Technology System users and modified many other decontamination system EUAs that are authorized to decontaminate compatible N95 respirators. While our evidence and real-world experience still supports the use of this methodology for up to 10 cycles, at this time, these new national authorizations for decontamination systems using Bioquell Technology only allow for a maximum of four decontamination cycles, which continue to be most cycles of any decontamination system. At no time has there been any known issues at Duke with the use of decontaminated N95s. As a result of this modification of our EUA, and until we can clarify this FDA decision, we have pulled the limited number of known N95 masks that have undergone more than four decontamination cycles out of inventory. We do not anticipate many of these masks with five or more marks are still in circulation, but if one is identified it should be returned and not used at this time. Given this update, we still encourage all team members to continue returning their N95 masks for reprocessing at the appropriate times. These supplies are critical to our COVID-19 response, and we appreciate your help in conserving our resources.
1.25.2021 at 5:27 am: Vaccination Clinic Shifts Available
Our community and employee vaccination efforts are well underway. If you are interested in a shift at one of Duke’s vaccination clinics, please fill out this form, even if you have previously filled out a form or have already worked a shift at a clinic. If you are selected for a possible assignment, someone will be in touch to match your interest and availability with a shift that meets the greatest need. We are fortunate to have overwhelming support for this effort, so not everyone will receive an assignment right away. We appreciate your patience as you wait for a response. If you have questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you again for being willing to help with this historic effort.
1.25.2021 at 5:04 am: #OneMoreWay Myth v. Fact Video: Vaccine & Conception
Safe, tested and effective – the COVID-19 vaccine is one more way to stay healthy. Check out our latest "Myth vs. Fact" video which clarifies how the vaccine does not cause infertility. This video features Geeta Swamy, MD.
1.19.2021 at 5:23 am: Reviewing Staffing Models Due to Capacity
Given the rise of COVID-19 in our community, we are experiencing high capacity in our hospitals, and our team is preparing for even more cases in the coming weeks. A part of our preparations includes reviewing our staffing models and identifying creative solutions to address these challenges. We are also working with our supply chain partners to ensure we have adequate personal protective equipment to keep our teams safe, including securing gloves, gowns and N95 respirators.
1.19.2021 at 5:17 am: #OneMoreWay Myth v. Fact Video: Practice Healthy Behaviors after the Vaccine
Safe, tested and effective – the COVID-19 vaccine is one more way to stay healthy. Check out our latest "Myth v. Fact" video which addresses a myth about not needing to mask or practice healthy behaviors after receiving your vaccination. This video features Cameron Wolfe, MBBS.
1.19.2021 at 5:02 am: Expanding Patient Access to the COVID-19 Vaccine
Today, our fourth patient vaccination site opens at Southern High School. Duke Regional Hospital is partnering with the Durham County Department of Public Health to open the site which will enhance access to the vaccine within our community populations. We will keep everyone informed of these expansions and progress to equitably distribute COVID-19 vaccines. Congrats to the team at Duke Regional and system partners for operationalizing this site so quickly and safely.
1.13.2021 at 5:20 am: #OneMoreWay Myth v. Fact Video: Underlying Conditions and the COVID-19 Vaccine
Safe, tested and effective – the COVID-19 vaccine is one more way to stay healthy. Check out our latest "Myth v. Fact" video which addresses myths about the vaccine and underlying health conditions and features Cameron Wolfe, MBBS.
1.13.2021 at 5:03 am: Call for Volunteers to Assist at Vaccination Clinics
As we work to to provide vaccinations for eligible team members, patients and members of our community, we continue to ramp up our operations and efforts. To assist with these clinics, we are looking for volunteers to help in our various vaccination locations. There are many different volunteer roles available that include both clinical and non-clinical functions. If you are interested in participating, please complete this form.
1.11.2021 at 5:20 am: #OneMoreWay Myth v. Fact Video: Pregnancy and the COVID-19 Vaccine
Safe, tested and effective – the COVID-19 vaccine is one more way to stay healthy. "One More Way" is Duke Health's campaign to encourage everyone to do what they can to prevent the spread of infection regardless of where they fall in the distribution plan to help keep themselves and others safe. This week, we are launching our #OneMoreWay campaign, and we are starting to share short videos that feature our infectious disease experts addressing common myths. The first video of the series addresses myths about the vaccine and pregnancy and features Geeta Swamy, MD. Myths include whether pregnant people can get the vaccine, if the vaccine is less effective for pregnant people and whether the vaccine will protect a fetus.
1.11.2021 at 5:09 am: Patient and Community Vaccination Clinics Open
Last week, we began administering vaccines to patients in group 1 of Phase 1B of the state's distribution plan. This is an exciting and historic time for our organization as we have already vaccinated hundreds of patients and community members from this group. Appointments are required for vaccination. Anyone age 75 or older is eligible for vaccination. You can reference these updated talking points for more information about our vaccination process for patients and the community. We also opened our first clinic for patient and community COVID-19 vaccination in the Karsh Alumni Center last week. Today, we will open another patient and community COVID-19 vaccination clinic at the Duke Raleigh Hospital Medical Office Building 9.
1.4.2021 at 5:03 am: Updated Guidance on Vaccine Distribution
A tested, safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine will be available to all who want it. The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services recently updated their guidance on vaccine distribution. Duke Health is following all federal, state and local guidelines on the distribution of the vaccine to ensure that it is equitably administered within each group. An updated infographic is now available to download as a PDF for sharing internally and externally.
12.21.2020 at 5:14 am: COVID-19 Vaccine Patient Webpage and Blog Post
This week, we developed a new webpage on our Duke Health website to provide more information to our patients about COVID-19 vaccines. We also promoted a new blog post that outlines vaccine development updates and what patients should expect for our vaccine distribution plans.
12.21.2020 at 5:05 am: After your Vaccine: When to Contact the COVID-19 Hotline
After receiving the COVID-19 vaccine, you may develop some side effects in response to the vaccine in the next 24 to 48 hours. This handout is a guide to help you decide if you should contact the employee COVID-19 Hotline for advice on getting a COVID-19 test.
12.17.2020 at 5:07 am: Vaccine Distribution Plan Update
With safety as our top priority, the first of many COVID-19 vaccines were administered to a small group of our team members earlier this week, and we’re remarkably proud of our Duke team for being first in the Triangle to administer the vaccine outside of clinical trials. This is a historic moment for our organization, state and country, and we are all excited about how these vaccines can help us better care for our patients, their loved ones and each other.
This is just the beginning. We are working to massively scale up our operations in the coming weeks to offer the vaccine to all Duke healthcare workers who are most likely to have prolonged exposure to COVID-19 patients in the course of fulfilling their job responsibilities. This is a complex operation with many systems in place and coordination required at a federal, state, local and health system level. We are diligently working to enhance this process and streamline inefficiencies. We ask for your patience and understanding as we work through this – just as we have through every other step of this pandemic – together.
We can assure you that over time, all of our Duke University Health System and PDC team members who want a COVID-19 vaccine will receive one, and you will be notified when it is your turn. We are committed to efficiently and equitably distribute vaccinations to our team members and patients while following the appropriate guidelines established by the CDC and North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NC DHHS).
While safe, effective vaccines give us hope for eventually ending the pandemic, we urge you to continue practicing healthy behaviors to prevent the spread of infection, especially during the holidays. Please keep it up to stay safe and protect yourself, your colleagues, your loved ones and our community. We will continue to share updates and resources about our vaccine distribution plans on our COVID-19 Vaccine Information webpage.
12.16.2020 at 5:13 am: COVID-19 Vaccine Updates to Patients
Last week, we distributed this message to all of our primary care patients with an update regarding the vaccine. We are continuing to develop more resources for patients, and we will continue to provide updates on the COVID-19 Vaccine webpage with the latest information.
12.14.2020 at 5:04 am: Team Member Vaccination Process at Duke Health
This week, team members eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine will be notified so they may schedule their appointment for vaccination. They will receive emails to register with the state’s COVID-19 Vaccination Management System (CVMS) and Duke’s Employee Occupational Health and Wellness. After registration, team members will need to schedule an appointment for vaccination. Vaccines will be administered at each of our three hospitals. Appointments will take 30 minutes which includes a 15-minute observation period after vaccination. When the observation period is completed, team members may schedule their follow-up appointment to receive their second and final dose of the vaccine. Check out the video below to learn more about this process and what to expect.
12.14.2020 at 5:02 am: COVID-19 Vaccine FAQs
Visit our COVID-19 Vaccine Information webpage to view new FAQs for our team members. This document with FAQs is also available on the COVID-19 website document library.
12.7.2020 at 5:19 am: New COVID-19 Vaccination Resources
We have launched this new page on our COVID-19 website as a resource for updates regarding our vaccination distribution plans. It will also serve as a reference for our key priorities and available resources for patients.
Many patients and community members have questions about the COVID-19 vaccine. Please use these talking points to help answer those questions with accurate, up-to-date information.
12.7.2020 at 5:11 am: COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Planning
Planning for vaccine distribution at Duke Health has been underway for months. Team members and providers eligible for vaccination in the initial phase of distribution will be notified via email and provided instructions on how to obtain There are currently no plans to require COVID-19 vaccination for any Duke University, Duke University Health System or PDC employees. The grid below provides a high-level overview of vaccine distribution phases for members of our Duke community (more details of the NC vaccine distribution plan can be found here).
12.7.2020 at 5:08 am: FDA Emergency Use Authorization Days Away
FDA Emergency Use Authorization approval for the Pfizer vaccine is potentially only days away, and the Moderna vaccine could receive similar authorization in the coming weeks. We are committed to keeping our entire team updated with the progress of vaccine development and distribution.
11.30.2020 at 5:12 pm: Contact Tracing at Duke Health
Every time one of our Duke Health team members tests positive for COVID-19, our contact tracing team steps in to identify any potential high-risk exposures, notify anyone who may need to get tested and isolate. As cases continue to rise in the community, we are also seeing a rise in employee infection rates. We need to be mindful of the resources it takes to do this important work and do everything we can to reduce the demand for these services.
Check out this short video to learn more about our contact tracing team, and how you can do your part to help by practicing healthy behaviors to prevent the spread of infection.
11.30.2020 at 5:03 am: Radiothon for Duke Children’s Dec. 15 – 16
Radiothon for Duke Children’s will be held on Dec. 15-16 this year. Tune in to MIX 101.5 FM during the Radiothon to hear incredible and moving stories from our Duke Children’s patient families and pledge your support. Together, we can continue to advance care and give hope to the children and families who need it most. Donate today at bit.ly/DukeRadiothon2020.
11.23.2020 at 5:08 am: Reducing the Spread of Infection among Team Members
We want to share a few real stories of how this virus is affecting our team. If just one person neglects to take the proper precautions to prevent the spread of infection, the impact can seriously affect our team members and our patients. Check out this short video to learn more about the importance of us combating this virus together.
11.19.2020 at 5:12 pm: Asymptomatic COVID-19 Testing Options
Given the upcoming holiday, several team members have requested more information about available asymptomatic testing services. Please keep in mind that testing alone cannot prevent the spread of infection, and even if you test negative for COVID-19, you should still take steps to protect yourself and others. It is possible to receive a negative COVID-19 test result if the sample was collected early in your infection and then test positive later during this illness. You could also be exposed to COVID-19 after your test. If that happens, the infection could be spread to others if you are not diligent about physical distancing, wearing a face mask and performing hand hygiene.
The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) offers numerous no-cost community testing events for you and your family members. There are multiple events being held in counties across the state this weekend. Local health departments, pharmacies and other locations also provide convenient access to testing. You can find the service closest to you here through the NCDHHS test site finder. In some instances, there may be fees for these services.
Starting Friday, Nov. 20, team members can also call the Duke COVID-19 Hotline (919-385-0429, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.) to schedule an appointment for asymptomatic testing. To help our team members reduce the risk of spreading infection, we are now offering no-cost asymptomatic testing for Duke University, Duke University Health System and PDC team members. Appointments must be scheduled in advance – walking up to a Duke Health COVID-19 testing tent to request testing is not permitted. You should anticipate receiving a result within 48 hours. We also encourage you to ensure your MyChart is active so you can receive your test result as soon as it is processed. If you are interested in receiving this service, we encourage you to schedule your appointment for this weekend to ensure you have your result before the holiday.
This is a service with limited capacity which we plan to provide for our team as long as our supplies and resources allow. If you would like to request asymptomatic testing for a family member, there will be a fee associated for this service.
11.19.2020 at 6:01 am: Join the DUHS Nursing Town Hall Today
This afternoon, our nursing leaders and other leaders from across Duke Health will answer your questions regarding our COVID-19 response and vaccine developments. During this event, panelists will also discuss COVID-19 testing for those traveling during the holiday season, including the associated costs, where to get tested and how to schedule. They will continue the discussion from Monday’s virtual town hall, and all team members are encouraged to join.
Please join the town hall this afternoon at 4 p.m. on Zoom.
11.16.2020 at 5:21 am: Community Connections Tomorrow
To connect our patients and community with Duke Health experts, we are hosting an “Ask the Expert” online series. During these 30-minute events, we will answer questions and provide information on popular health and wellness topics.
The next event is tomorrow, Nov. 17. Duke Health experts in mental health, nutrition and infectious diseases will provide tips to help you maintain your health and manage stress during the holidays. They will also answer questions about safely celebrating the holidays with friends and family in a time of COVID-19. Register for this event here and be sure to share this with your friends and family.
11.16.2020 at 5:07 am: COVID-19 Cases Rising in the Community
Last week, North Carolina surpassed 3,100 new COVID-19 cases and over 1,200 hospitalizations – both setting new records for the state. Given the rise of infection in our community, we are also seeing a rise in cases among our employees.
Our team is preparing for even more cases in the coming weeks. We are working with our supply chain partners to ensure we have adequate personal protective equipment to keep our teams safe, including securing gloves, gowns and N95 respirators. We must all commit to practicing the three W’s and doing our part to keep our environments safe.
11.9.2020 at 5:19 am: Criteria for Discontinuation of Special Airborne Contact Isolation (updated)
This updated document and poster provide guidance to healthcare workers on when to discontinue Special Airborne Contact (SAC) isolation for patients with COVID-19. This guidance was updated to remove pregnancy from the 20-day isolation category. The updated guidance applies to all areas of Duke Health including adult and children’s inpatient, outpatient, surgical, procedural and other care areas.
11.9.2020 at 5:02 am: Flu Vaccination Compliance Deadline Tomorrow at 10 a.m.
Annual flu vaccination or policy compliance is a condition of employment for all DUHS and PDC team members, physicians, providers and staff. The deadline for getting your vaccination or otherwise demonstrating policy compliance is 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 10, 2020.
If you are vaccinated or notified of an approved exemption on or after Nov. 6, inform your manager as compliance data reporting lags several days. Those who are vaccinated outside of the Employee Health and peer vaccination venues must submit their documentation via VaxTrax as well as inform their manager.
11.2.2020 at 5:23 am: Tips for Hosting Fun Virtual Celebrations
We understand that in past years, our colleagues and their families have enjoyed coming together to celebrate the holiday season. This year will feel different, but we want to prioritize the safety of our team members and their loved ones. Eating together is a high-risk activity, so this year we encourage you to consider virtual gatherings. This document includes some alternative ideas for your virtual holiday celebrations. These events allow everyone to relax and reconnect while celebrating safely.
11.2.2020 at 5:14 am: Access to Personal Email & Social Media Now Prohibited on Duke Health Network
Duke Health is enacting additional network security measures to help mitigate an ongoing and serious cyber threat and protect our patients, staff and infrastructure. Effective immediately, all devices connected to the Duke Health network will be prevented from accessing personal email and social media accounts. We understand that this necessary precaution will not be easy for many of our team members and patients. This letter may be used to explain this update to our patients and visitors.
11.2.2020 at 5:03 am: Reminder: No Eating Food During Team Meetings
Eating and drinking in common spaces is the highest-risk activity for potential infection while at work. This includes eating and drinking while gathering with others for any meetings or events. As a reminder for all of our team members, eating food is not allowed during any team meetings.
Potlucks are not allowed, and food items that are purchased for team members should be individually packaged for takeaway and consumption in a designated eating area that provides adequate separation from others.
10.26.2020 at 5:12 am: Complete CARE hub Survey to Enhance Patient Care
CARE hub (Capacity, Access, Real-Time, Engagement) is a vital program to help our health system improve patient access by delivering the best care to our patients when and where they need it.
Please help us understand your experience dealing with patient delays and harms by completing a brief, anonymous survey. This will help us implement tools and processes that enable DUHS to provide the high standard of care we work towards every day. The survey is available until Oct. 28.
10.26.2020 at 5:09 am: Duke Health Hospital Visitation Hours Update
Effective tomorrow, we will update visiting hours at all three Duke Health hospital locations for adult inpatients from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Visitors will still be screened daily and required to wear a mask while in the hospital and on campus. This letter is available in English and Spanish to share this change with our patients and visitors.
We will continue to monitor the presence of COVID-19 in our community and assess our visitor restrictions. We are planning to eventually shift our visitor policy to accommodate one visitor per day rather than the duration of the stay. This one visitor will not be required to be identified as the inpatient’s designated visitor for the entire duration of stay. We are working to implement a visitor management system that will accommodate this transition, and we will keep you updated on our progress
10.19.2020 at 5:26 am: Community Connections – “Ask the Expert” Online Series
To connect our patients and community with Duke Health experts, we will be hosting an “Ask the Expert” online series. During these 30-minute events, we will answer questions and provide information on popular health and wellness topics.
For the first event on Oct. 21, Duke Health pediatricians and specialists will provide information about returning to in-person learning in the time of COVID-19, address questions about vaccinations and help prepare you and your family for respiratory illness season. Register for this event here and be sure to share this with your friends and family.
10.19.2020 at 5:18 am: Management of Patients Infected with or Exposed to COVID-19 in Ambulatory Pediatric Clinics
This document provides guidelines for the management of patients infected with or exposed to COVID-19 in ambulatory pediatric clinics. It includes updated timelines to consider during patient screening.
10.19.2020 at 5:05 am: Clinics Identified to Serve as “Model Area” for Duke Quality Management System
As a part of our ongoing commitment to zero harm, we regularly look for ways to improve patient flow, patient experience and team member satisfaction at all of our facilities. We recently identified two clinics that will serve as “model areas” for our quality management system: Duke Perinatal Consultants of Durham and the Fetal Diagnostic Center.
This is a great partnership between our hospital-based and PDC clinics, and we look forward to keeping our team informed on the progress made during this endeavor.
10.12.2020 at 5:13 am: Moments to Movement Virtual Town Hall Oct. 19
Join us for our next virtual town hall on Oct. 19 at 4:30 p.m. During this special virtual town hall, leaders will discuss Moments to Movement (M2M) – Duke Health’s collective stand against systemic racism and injustice.
Monday, Oct. 19 | 4:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Join the Zoom meeting here.
10.12.2020 at 5:10 am: DUHS Respiratory Viral Testing Guidance
The COVID-19 pandemic is reducing the supply of all non-COVID respiratory viral tests this fall/winter making it necessary to use tests judiciously. This document provides testing guidance for the 2020-2021 respiratory season.
10.12.2020 at 5:06 am: Update on Cases Rising in Our Community
As we all know, this virus remains in our community and our nation. As we head into the Fall season, most states are once again seeing increases in daily cases. Here in our local community, we are observing clusters of cases among shared living facilities. We must all remain vigilant in following key recommendations and interventions we have put in place to decrease the risk of exposure to COVID-19.
10.5.2020 at 5:22 am: After-Visit Summaries (updated)
The following documents have been updated on the COVID-19 website. After-visit summary (AVS) updates have also been revised in Maestro Care:
• AVS for patients with no symptoms or mild symptoms who do not need hospital treatment: .COVIDAVSINSTRUCTIONS and .COVIDAVSINSTRUCTIONSSPANISH.
• AVS for known COVID-19 inpatients being discharged from hospital: .COVIDAVSDISCHARGEINSTRUCTIONS and .COVIDAVSDISCHARGEINSTRUCTIONSSPANISH.
• AVS for known COVID-19 immunocompromised patients: .COVIDIMMUNOCOMPROMISED and .COVIDIMMUNOCOMPROMISEDSPANISH.
• AVS for known COVID-19 pregnant patients: .COVIDAVSPREGNANCY and .COVIDAVSPREGNANCYSPANISH.
10.5.2020 at 5:14 am: Updated Drive-Up COVID-19 Testing Locations
As of Monday, Oct. 5, the operations of the drive-up test collection site at Duke Family Medicine GC (Pickens) lot will transfer to Duke Primary Care. Also effective Oct. 5, Roxboro Road Pediatrics will permanently close. Pediatric testing is available at the Willard Street and GC lot locations.
On Wednesday, Oct. 7, the drive-up testing site at Duke Urgent Care and Duke Primary Care Morrisville will permanently close. We’d like to thank the DUC/DPC Morrisville staff and leadership team for their ongoing support of this drive-up testing site since March.
On Thursday, Oct. 8, Duke Primary Care will open a new drive-up testing location in the lower level of the parking garage at Duke Health Arringdon in Morrisville. The site will be open 7 days a week from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., caring for patients of all ages.
10.5.2020 at 5:05 am: Guidelines for Social Gatherings and Holiday Celebrations
We understand that in past years, our colleagues would often come together as teams to celebrate the holiday season and our collective successes. This year will feel different for sure, but we again want to prioritize safety of our team members so that everyone may remain healthy and able to connect with loved ones. As such, please note the guidelines outlined in this document.
9.28.2020 at 5:27 am: Recommended Eye Protection
The documents below provide updated recommendations for all team members who have direct interactions with patients and visitors.
• Recommended Eye Protection (updated)
• Recommended Eye Protection FAQs (updated)
• Criteria for Adequate Eye Protection (new)
• Appropriate PPE During COVID-19 Response (updated)
9.28.2020 at 5:03 am: October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month
During October, Duke Health team members at our clinical locations will wear pink earloop masks instead of their usual blue earloop masks while supplies are available. These will serve a visual reminder and conversation starter during team members’ interactions with patients, visitors and each other. The pink masks, along with other fun and creative tactics being planned for many of our locations, are an important way for us to live out our mission of advancing health together.
9.23.2020 at 5:29 am: Duke Health Leadership Town Hall Update
The next Duke Health Leadership Virtual Town Hall will be held on Monday, Oct. 19. We are transitioning our Town Hall sessions to occur once a month, on the third Monday.
9.23.2020 at 5:17 am: Guidelines for the Use of Different Models of N95 Respirators
Given recent CDC recommendations, Duke Health has implemented changes in recommended PPE for staff in perioperative and procedural areas where high-risk aerosol-generating procedures are performed. This document provides more information about the use of new models of N95 respirators for certain care areas.
9.23.2020 at 5:11 am: Clinical Operations Communication Cadence Update
Beginning Monday, Sept. 28, the Clinical Operations all-staff email update will transition to a weekly cadence. The messages will be sent every Monday and will continue to include timely and relevant information for the Duke Health team.
9.21.2020 at 5:15 am: Accessing MaestroCare
As Duke Health staff, you have access rights to MaestroCare only to perform your Duke Health responsibilities. Therefore, you may not access MaestroCare (including the patient look-up screen) for your personal use. Specifically, MaestroCare is not a means to identify a colleague’s address, phone number or birthday. Inappropriately accessing the patient look-up screen will result in corrective action, up to and including termination.
9.21.2020 at 5:06 am: Reminder: Join our Heart Walk Team
Duke Health is proud to support the American Heart Association and its work to make life better for the 120 million people in the U.S. whose cardiovascular conditions put them at a greater risk for COVID-19. The Triangle Heart Walk has always been about coming together to get hearts pumping, honor survivors and raise lifesaving funds - while having fun along the way. This year’s Heart Walk celebration is digital. We encourage you to participate in the weekly Wednesday challenges and join one of our teams. Learn more here.
9.16.2020 at 5:19 am: VoteER Initiative & Voter Registration
Several Duke Health team members and learners are partnering with other national academic medical centers, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Hospital Association in a nonpartisan, online voter registration initiative called VotER ahead of the November election. This program will help patients, visitors and team members become more civically engaged.
The VotER program is completely voluntary, and it does not impact or interrupt clinical care. Team members who volunteer with the program will wear lanyards and badge backers with a QR code that individuals can use to register to vote on their own device. In our clinical environments, we ask that VotER volunteers not proactively contact patients, visitors or team members or impede privacy guidelines, but serve as a resource for people who are interested in learning about the voter registration process.
More information about voter registration is available on vote.duke.edu. If you are interested in being part of the VotER initiative, complete this form. You may also view the recording of our most recent Duke Health leadership virtual town hall to learn more about Duke Health's voter registration and turnout initiatives for the 2020 elections.
9.16.2020 at 5:04 am: Recognizing our EVS Team Members
Every day, we are grateful for our EVS team members who work diligently to ensure our environments are safe for patients, their loved ones and each other. We are especially proud to recognize them now, during this year’s National Healthcare Environmental Services Week and in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Their exceptional work and commitment to quality and safety make a real difference in the lives of many every day.
9.14.2020 at 5:42 am: Duke HealthCheck Available for Team Member Daily Screening
As a reminder, the Duke HealthCheck app is available for team members at participating entities to fast pass daily health screening. This week, team members at PDC clinics may use HealthCheck when entering the facility. Also, many facilities are now adjusting entrances to establish a “fast pass” lane for team members who use the app.
9.14.2020 at 5:03 am: Changes to Drive-Up Test Collection Sites
Tomorrow, Duke Primary Care will open a new drive-up test collection site at 601 Willard Street in downtown Durham. The new site will be open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day and will care for patients of all ages. Opening the Willard Street site will expand Duke Health’s test collection capacity, which is especially important as we enter cold and flu season.
We will close the drive-up test collection site at DPC on Pickett Road at 12 p.m. today until further notice. Thank you to the practice’s team and leaders for supporting this important COVID-19 testing initiative since March. The locations and hours of operation for all other drive-up test collection sites will remain the same.
9.9.2020 at 5:32 am: Duke Health Quality & Safety Conference Postponed
The 15th Annual Duke Health Quality and Safety Conference, originally scheduled for March 26 at the Durham Convention Center, was postponed when Duke Health began its COVID-19 response efforts in early March. We had rescheduled for early December of this year, but ongoing limitations for in-person gatherings require that we postpone the Conference indefinitely. We hope to conduct the Conference in 2021 and will share the new event date when it becomes available.
9.9.2020 at 5:09 am: Get Your Flu Vaccination Today
The Duke Health flu vaccination campaign is in full swing. Annual vaccination or policy compliance is a condition of employment for all DUHS and PDC team members, physicians, providers and staff. All team members must get their vaccination or otherwise demonstrate policy compliance by 10 a.m. on Tuesday, November 10, 2020. Similar to prior years, the peer vaccination process is the preferred method for our team members to safely and efficiently get vaccinated.
8.31.2020 at 5:02 am: Changes in Pulmonary Function Test Reporting
Several changes in pulmonary function test (PFT) reporting are coming in September. These changes are related to reference equations for tests, defining impairment severity and DLCO reporting. Learn more here.
8.31.2020 at 5:02 am: Discontinuing Special Airborne Contact Isolation Poster Available
This new poster outlines new recommendations for a symptom-based strategy for discontinuing Special Airborne Contact isolation precautions for patients infected with COVID-19.
8.26.2020 at 5:09 am: CARE Hub Integrates with Maestro Care
CARE hub “Tile” dashboards integrate with Maestro Care to support our team's daily operations. To ensure the most accurate, current information is presented across the system, our DHTS partners have made numerous enhancements to Maestro Care workflows to be able to seamlessly transfer the data to the Tiles without creating additional work for our frontline team members. Critical clinical and operational data now populate the Tiles allowing our team members to quickly see and respond to any barriers. The Tiles are also available through AirWatch, further enhancing collaboration and communication across our entire system.
8.26.2020 at 5:02 am: Flu Vaccination Campaign to Launch Sept. 1
Earlier this month, all DUHS team members received a message from William J. Fulkerson, Jr., MD, executive vice president of DUHS, regarding our annual flu vaccination campaign. Annual vaccination or policy compliance is a condition of employment for all DUHS and PDC team members, physicians, providers and staff. More information about this year’s campaign will be provided soon, and you can see the full original message from Dr. Fulkerson here.
To learn more about Duke Health’s flu vaccination campaign, check out the recording of our last Duke Health town hall to hear a full update from Gail Shulby, chief of staff to the executive vice president and co-chair of the DUHS Universal Influenza Vaccination Work Group.
8.24.2020 at 5:43 am: New Infection Prevention Webpage Available
This week, the Infection Prevention team launched a new page on the COVID-19 website. Review this page for more information about the guidelines and resources available to prevent the spread of infection.
8.24.2020 at 5:12 am: Performance Coaching Training Materials Available
DUHS is moving away from our traditional performance management approach to performance coaching – an approach designed to improve the team member experience and provide an opportunity to make authentic connections between team members and leaders. More resources are now available for managers and team members on the performance coaching site.
8.19.2020 at 5:27 am: Use Duke HealthCheck for Team Member Screening Today
Starting today, team members can use the new Duke HealthCheck mobile app for our daily health screening process at all three of our hospitals. If you are feeling healthy and work at one of our hospitals, please take a moment to download the app and complete the steps to receive your digital pass for the day. While use of the app is optional, it is strongly encouraged since it provides our staff with a quick, easy way to enter our hospital locations each day. The app was successfully piloted last month at Duke Regional Hospital, and some ambulatory clinic sites will begin piloting it today.
Learn more about this app and find answers to frequently asked questions here. Download it today on the Apple Store or the Google Play Store. You can also watch this video to learn more about how to download and use the app to check in daily.
8.19.2020 at 5:18 am: Register for the Triangle Heart Walk – Saturday, Oct. 10
Duke Health is a proud supporter of the American Heart Association. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Heart Walk will look different this year, and we will be reimagining how we can safely gather and engage with the event. What will not change is our commitment to the Heart Walk and our fight against heart disease and stroke. The Triangle Heart Walk’s Digital Celebration will be held on Saturday, Oct. 10. We encourage all of our team members to participate by forming a team or joining one. Please register now so we can all walk together, wherever we are. You can register at: www.TriangleHeartWalk.org/Duke.
8.19.2020 at 5:11 am: Universal Masking Update – Neck Gaiters & Bandanas Prohibited
Duke Health will no longer permit patients and visitors to wear neck gaiters or bandanas in our facilities. Patients and visitors are still not permitted to wear any mask with an exhalation valve. Patients and visitors may wear their own masks as long as they adequately cover the mouth and nose and have ties or earloops. If they don’t have an approved face covering, please provide them with an earloop mask. Please view this updated reference sheet for team members and this handout for patients/visitors in English and Spanish.
Team members working in any Duke Health building where there is not a formal screening process and no direct patient care may wear a cloth mask with ties or earloops. Acceptable cloth masks should completely cover the nose and mouth.
8.17.2020 at 5:41 am: Celebrating Over 1,000 Patients with COVID-19 Discharged
Because of your dedication and resilience, we are celebrating a very special milestone – the successful discharge of more than 1,000 hospitalized COVID patients throughout the Duke Health system. Whether you’re on the front line or behind the scenes, thank you for your amazing work during our COVID-19 response. It’s because of you, our team members, that we have been able to provide remarkable care for these patients.
8.17.2020 at 5:12 am: Universal Masking & Distancing Audits Now in Effect
DUHS is now auditing team member compliance with universal masking and physical distancing in addition to our traditional measures of hand hygiene and PPE compliance in all of our hospitals. We are also in the process of rolling this out to all of our clinics. By tracking and appropriately sharing this compliance through our huddles, we will better understand how we can prevent the spread of infection. It is imperative that every team member is compliant with proper masking and physical distancing while interacting with others.
8.12.2020 at 5:34 am: Download Duke HealthCheck Today
On Wednesday, Aug. 19, Duke Health will allow team members to use a new mobile app to streamline the daily health screening process at all three of our hospitals. Use of the app is optional, but it provides our staff with a quick, easy way to enter our hospital locations each day. The app was successfully piloted last month at Duke Regional Hospital, and our ambulatory clinic sites will begin piloting it on Aug.19.
The Duke HealthCheck app allows team members to verify their health status by answering screening questions on their mobile devices before arriving to work. The app generates a "digital pass" that team members may show screeners when entering the facility.
8.12.2020 at 5:12 am: Managing Our OR Schedule
Given the need to care for patients with COVID-19 in our hospitals, we are diligently working to appropriately manage our OR schedule. We are continuing to prioritize urgent cases as needed. Our teams are meeting at least daily to assess our scheduled operations and bedflow.
8.10.2020 at 5:04 am: The Duke Compact & SymMon app Clarification
Duke University Health System team members are not expected to sign The Duke Compact because we are already meeting the spirit of it.
The health system has developed a new “Duke HealthCheck” app to streamline access to our facilities. It is aligned with our daily screening process and is currently in the pilot phase. We will roll it out broadly soon. Only Duke Health team members who are based at our main campus and regularly access university buildings will need to download and use the Duke University “SymMon” app. Unlike our health system clinical sites, the university does not have screeners in place at building entrances. Instead, the "SympMon" app facilitates the necessary health screening and door access for these facilities to ensure the safest environment. For example, when buildings open, to access the Trent Semans Center you would use the university’s app.
8.10.2020 at 5:01 am: Guidance for Adult End-of-Life Visitation (new)
This document provides updated guidance for managing end-of-life visitation for adult inpatients at all three Duke hospitals. It includes policies for patients with and without COVID-19.
8.5.2020 at 5:06 am: Expect Delayed Test Results for Staff
Due to severe weather earlier this week, numerous appointments for COVID-19 testing at our tents were rescheduled. This may cause some delays in receiving test results for team members who required testing for COVID-19.
8.5.2020 at 5:10 am: New Guidance on Duration of Infectivity
Below are documents with updated guidance based on new recommendations from the CDC for a symptom-based strategy for discontinuing Special Airborne Contact isolation precautions for patients infected with COVID-19. Please work with your local leaders to review and implement these changes as appropriate for your area.
- Criteria for Discontinuation of Special Airborne Contact Isolation (updated)
- Temporary Workflow for Discontinuing Special Airborne Contact Isolation (new)
- Guidance for Appropriate Repeat COVID-19 Testing (updated)
- Tracheostomy Protocol During COVID-19 (updated)
- Pre-operative and Pre-Procedural Guidelines for COVID-19 Testing (updated)
- Video with overview of key changes and why the CDC has updated its guidance (new)
8.3.2020 at 5:18 am: Moments to Movement Announcement
Last week, Chancellor Eugene Washington, MD, shared a meaningful message with all of our team members that described how our health system is taking action to stand against racism through our Moments to Movement initiative.
In this announcement, he provided an outline of how we’re approaching this important work. In addition to other key measures, we’ve established workgroups to lay the foundation of deep interdisciplinary change throughout the health system, the School of Medicine and the School of Nursing. We’re also looking to external partners to serve as expert advisors to help us refine our framework, achieve our strategic priorities and create the culture we desire. Here is the full announcement.
8.3.2020 at 5:13 am: Immediate Release of COVID-19 Test Results to MyChart
Effective July 31, 2020, all COVID-19 screening test results will be released automatically to outpatients in MyChart immediately after the result is finalized in Maestro Care. Inpatient results will not be released through MyChart until discharge. As a result of this change, many patients may receive their results in MyChart before the ordering provider has seen the test result. Please continue to provide appropriate post-test counseling to patients electronically via MyChart or by phone as a complement to the auto-result release process.
7.29.2020 at 5:31 am: Duke University Reopening Update
Earlier this week, President Vincent E. Price announced an update regarding Duke University’s reopening plans given the current infection rate of COVID-19. Along with other updates, the university has decided to decrease the on-campus residential population by about 30 percent. Duke University will limit Duke-provided housing in the fall to first-year students, sophomores and students who require special accommodations because of personal, academic or other reasons. View the full message with all updates here.
7.29.2020 at 5:19 am: Childcare Survey Closes Today
Our childcare survey closes today. With so much uncertainty about how the coming school year will operate, we know that many of our team members are struggling to balance work and life — and we’d like to better understand how childcare concerns impact you. We’re asking everyone to respond, parents or not, so we can understand how many people are affected.
Duke may not have the solutions, but in order to know how we can help, we need to understand the nature and scope of your challenges. Please use the survey to share your voice. Thanks to the 5,000 team members who have responded thus far.
7.27.2020 at 5:41 am: Aetna & Cigna Extend Telehealth Coverage
Together with other partner institutions in North Carolina, Duke Health had formal conversations with Cigna leadership regarding their current telehealth coverage. As of July 23, the formal policy was updated on their website to confirm the extension of their current telehealth coverage policy to Dec. 31, 2020. Aetna also posted the extension of their telehealth coverage until the end the year. See this document for more information.
7.27.2020 at 5:23 am: Updated Guidance on Ability to Return to Work
This document includes updated guidance for healthcare providers with known or suspected COVID-19 infection, including return to work criteria and protocol.
7.27.2020 at 5:04 am: New FAQs for Healthcare Provider Quarantine Guidelines
Based on recommendations from the CDC and our infectious disease experts, the Duke Employee Occupational Health & Wellness team has updated guidance for healthcare workers who live with someone confirmed to have COVID-19. Review this document for answers to frequently asked questions regarding this update.
7.22.2020 at 5:19 am: Updated Guidance on Duration of Infectivity
The CDC released updated guidance recommending that a symptom-based strategy for discontinuing Special Airborne Contact isolation for patients infected with COVID-19. The CDC no longer recommends using a test-based strategy (i.e. two negative tests), due to prolonged detection of viral RNA that is no longer infectious.
Available data indicate that persons with mild to moderate COVID-19 remain infectious no longer than 10 days after symptom onset. Persons with more severe to critical illness or severe immune compromise likely remain infectious no longer than 20 days after symptom onset.
7.22.2020 at 5:03 am: Tell Us How Childcare Impact You
With so much uncertainty about how the coming school year will operate, we know that many of our team members are struggling to balance competing priorities. We don’t know if Duke can help — but we do want to hear your voice. To help us better understand how childcare concerns impact you, please take a few minutes to complete this survey by July 29. We are asking everyone to respond, parents or not, so we understand how many people are affected.
Duke may not have the solutions, but in order to know if we can help, we need to understand the nature and scope of your challenges. Please use the survey to share your voice.
7.22.2020 at 5:01 am: Updated Guidance on Working Remotely
In June, we communicated that our administrative and non-clinical team members who are able to work from home effectively should continue to do so until at least Aug. 1, with the approval of their supervisor. Because COVID-19 cases continue to rise and spread throughout our local communities, the system is not setting a revised date for our team members to return to onsite facilities. Instead, local leaders will determine how and when teams will return to work safely and communicate any changes to you as they become available. As we continue to care for our community through the COVID-19 crisis, redeployment needs will continue. We may need to call upon non-clinical staff who are currently working remotely to come onsite to serve as screeners or in other roles that support critical operational needs.
7.20.2020 at 5:08 am: Update Your Information on Duke@Work
Please take a moment to ensure your contact information is correct on Duke@Work. It is important that your information is up to date – including your cell phone number – so that our contact tracing team can reach you if needed. Visit Duke@Work and select the "My Info" tab. Then select "My Profile," and "Maintain your Addresses & Phone Numbers" to update your information as appropriate.
7.20.2020 at 5:15 am: Successful Move to Duke Central Tower
Thank you to all of our team members who assisted with moving patients from 8 East in Duke Medicine Pavilion to the new Duke Central Tower over the weekend. Moving this unit is an essential part of our COVID-19 response and we’re grateful for our extraordinary team members who made this possible.
7.15.2020 at 5:06 am: Respiratory Care Unit Opens to Serve Patients at DUH
This week, our colleagues at Duke University Hospital opened a new unit focused on providing respiratory care for our patients. This respiratory care unit is located on 8 West of the Duke Medicine Pavilion. The unit is designed to provide critical care for our patients with respiratory illness. The new unit is an important part of our response to the rise of COVID-19 in our community, and we're grateful and proud of the team members who worked diligently to make this transition possible.
7.15.2020 at 5:01 am: DUH, PDC & DPC COVID-19 Testing Guidance
This document summarizes recommendations for COVID-19 testing based on 12 categories of patients and the respective approved tests at DUH, PDC and DPC.
7.13.2020 at 5:19 am: Guidance for Appropriate Repeat Testing (update)
This document provides guidance for appropriate repeat testing. This document was updated to include notifying Infection Prevention to update the EPIC Infection Status for:
- Patients who have tested negative for COVID-19 but are suspected of having “Clinical COVID” (an illness consistent with COVID-19 where there is no alternative diagnosis to explain their illness) should have their Infection Status reflect this diagnosis.
- Patients who meet criteria to discontinue Special Airborne Contact Isolation and are no longer regarded as infectious should have COVID-19 cleared from their Infection Status.
7.13.2020 at 5:02 am: Recommended Eye Protection FAQs
This document provides answers to frequently asked questions regarding recent recommendations regarding eye protection for healthcare workers.
7.8.2020 at 5:18 am: Watch for Symptoms
As we learn more about COVID-19, the list of symptoms reported by people with the illness has grown over time. The CDC has updated the list of symptoms to include the following:
• Fever or chills
• Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
• Muscle or body aches
• New loss of taste or smell
• Sore throat
• Congestion or runny nose
• Nausea or vomiting
Symptoms can range from mild to severe illness, and they may appear two to 14 days after exposure to the virus. If you are experiencing any symptoms of illness, you should stay home and call the Duke COVID-19 Hotline at 919-385-0429, option 1, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Check out this page from the CDC website for more information.
7.8.2020 at 5:14 am: Visitor Restriction Update FAQs
This document provides answers for frequently asked questions regarding our updated visitor restrictions. Please review these for more information regarding our current visitor restrictions in place.
7.8.2020 at 5:07 am: Protecting Each Other
Of all the tests that have been performed for staff members, 5.9 percent have resulted positive for COVID-19. As we monitor the rise of cases in the surrounding community, we are continually assessing the increase of team members testing positive for COVID-19 as well. Employee Health, OESO and Infection Prevention/Hospital Epidemiology teams are meeting regularly to investigate new employee infections from the prior week, review cumulative data and develop action plans/reinforce education and training when appropriate. We also encourage all team members to model healthy behaviors while out in public settings, including wearing a mask, appropriately distancing from others and practicing good hand hygiene.
7.6.2020 at 5:08 am: Isolation Procedures and COVID-19 Testing for Asymptomatic Immunocompromised Patients in the Inpatient Setting (updated)
This document provides guidance on testing and isolation procedures for the hematopoietic stem cell transplants (HSCT), solid organ transplants (SOT) and acute leukemic patients who are admitted to the hospital. The document has now been updated to include guidance for pediatric patients.
7.6.2020 at 5:05 am: Updated Eye Protection Recommendations (new)
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) now recommends that healthcare workers caring for asymptomatic patients in areas of moderate to high community transmission wear eye protection in addition to face masks. Eye protection is most important when caring for patients who are unmasked. Review this document to see the updated recommendations from our infection prevention team.
7.6.2020 at 5:04 am: Wear a Mask in the Workplace and Community
To help you stay safe during this challenging time, we will be sending out a care package to all DUHS and PDC employees in the coming days that includes cloth masks and hand sanitizer. It will also include recommendations for when to wear the cloth masks, how to safely store them and a message of encouragement from our leadership team.
7.1.2020 at 5:14 am: Employee Infection Incorporated Into DQS Harms Indicators
The quality system is focused on continued learning through observation and identification of opportunities to improve. Recently we have seen a steady increase in the number of team members infected with COVID-19. To increase the visibility in our daily work to help reduce the infection spread amongst our team members, we are beginning to track and document the employee infection rates as harms at our daily huddles.
7.1.2020 at 5:03 am: Managing Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome
These documents provide early guidance to clinicians managing children with symptoms associated with the recently described Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) in the Emergency Department and Inpatient settings.
7.1.2020 at 5:01 am: We Want Your Feedback
Help us improve our Duke Health leadership town halls by providing your feedback today. Take this very brief survey to help us enhance our virtual town halls – it will take less than a minute.
6.29.2020 at 5:18 am: Patient Forms in Ambulatory Setting
This document provides guidance on handling forms and paper in the ambulatory care setting. This includes documents such as camp forms, sports physical forms, vaccination records, school/university form requirements, etc.
6.29.2020 at 5:11 am: Stay Home If Sick
One of the most important ways you can help keep your team safe is to stay home if you are experiencing any signs of illness and call the Duke COVID-19 Hotline at 919-385-0429, option 1, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Recently, we have noticed a trend that team members are continuing to come to work while experiencing symptoms of illness. This puts other team members – and patients – at risk.
We understand the pressure of wanting to support our team during these challenging times. However, it is crucial that all of our team members recognize when they are feeling symptoms associated with COVID-19 so we arrange for testing.
6.29.2020 at 5:08 am: Tobacco-Free at Duke
Duke University will become a tobacco-free campus effective July 1, 2020. Duke Health facilities, including the School of Medicine and the School of Nursing, have been tobacco free since 2007. With the new policy now covering all property owned or leased by Duke University and Duke Health, it is a great opportunity to re-engage our attentiveness to the tobacco-free initiative.
6.24.2020 at 5:08 am: Visitor Restrictions Update
Effective today, Duke Health eased some visitation guidelines in hospitals and clinics based on recommendations from infectious disease experts and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Please see this update provided to the team yesterday with more information about these updates. Below are available resources to communicate these changes with our patients and visitors.
• Patient letter – English
• Patient letter – Spanish
• Visitor restrictions sign – 8.5"x11"
• Visitor restrictions sign – 11"x17"
• Maestro Care tip sheet
6.24.2020 at 5:03 am: Conversations with Colleagues Expands to Address Racial Injustice
Starting the first week of July, Duke’s social workers are expanding the “Conversations with Colleagues” program to offer a new series focused on how, together, we can stand against systemic racism. These peer-support sessions will allow employees to gather and discuss how we can move toward concrete action.
Sign up for an hour-long session today using the password solidarity.
6.22.2020 at 5:27 am: Duke Central Tower Opening to Provide Alternative Care Options
On Saturday, June 20, patients and their care teams on 8 West were relocated to the new Duke Central Tower (DCT). Patients and care teams on 8 East will move to the DCT on Saturday, July 18. The DCT is anticipated to fully open in summer of 2021. Thanks to all of our team members who have helped to make this effort possible.
6.22.2020 at 5:25 am: Face Coverings Required on Buses
As a reminder, everyone is required to wear a face covering while riding on campus buses. Individuals who are not wearing face coverings will not be allowed to board the bus. This new policy update is consistent with our advisory to all staff to continue wearing a face covering after exiting the facility when walking to and from your car, waiting for the bus or riding on the bus. You may choose to continue to wear the mask that was issued for the day, or you may wear an alternate face covering of your choice once you leave the hospital or healthcare facility.
6.17.2020 at 5:24 am: Inpatient Masking Update
All inpatients should wear a Duke-issued mask when a team member enters their room as well as when traveling to and from procedures. This resource is available to provide our patients with more information about this update and other operation updates we've made to minimize the spread of illness in our hospitals.
6.17.2020 at 5:23 am: Workplace Safety Measures
Workplace safety is one of our primary missions and we have developed several measures to ensure we are doing everything possible to keep all of our staff safe. Some of the behind-the-scenes activities that occur include:
- Exposure investigations and notifications
- Investigations for new staff member infections which includes a risk assessment for community exposure, work exposure and contact tracing to identify close contacts within the workplace
- Notification of close contacts from workplace contact tracing events
- Weekly meetings of EOHW, OESO and Infection Prevention/Hospital Epidemiology to review new employee infections from the prior week, review cumulative data and develop action plans/reinforce education and training, if indicated.
6.15.2020 at 5:29 am: Anticipated return of MS2 Students to Clinical Experiences/Clerkships
Second year medical students will return to their clerkships on June 15, 2020. We encourage embracing these students as active members of our team and in the care of patients. A document addressing frequently asked questions (FAQs) can be found here.
6.15.2020 at 5:24 am: Lab Ordering Reminder
Over the course of our response, our laboratory team has stepped up to enhance our ability to test for COVID-19. Below are a few reminders for expected turnaround time for COVID-19 testing. For inpatient and pre-operative tests, the median turnaround time is about 4-6 hours for all times of day. If samples are received by 6 p.m., they will be resulted before 6 a.m. the next day. Outpatient turnaround time is generally 24 hours. Please be sure to refer to the most updated guidance when ordering these tests.
6.15.2020 at 5:22 am: Masking in Hospital Patient Rooms
Starting today, ear loop masks will be provided for all inpatients across DUHS. All patients and visitors will be required to wear a Duke-issued mask when a team member enters their room as well as when going to and from procedures. Masks should be replaced each day or when soiled. Behavioral health patients or patients who are unable to tolerate a mask are not required to wear it. Please empathetically communicate the change to your patients to help them understand the important role masking plays in keeping those nearby safe.
6.10.2020 at 5:21 am: Moments to Movement Solidarity Walk Today
For those on the Duke University Hospital campus, please join us today for a walk of solidarity. We’re walking to take a collective stand against systemic racism and injustice and to show the world that we are stronger together. We encourage all team members to participate, as long as doing so does not disrupt patient care. If you cannot participate, the event will be streamed via Facebook Live on Duke Health's Facebook page and available for later viewing. We will gather in the courtyard between Duke Medicine Pavilion (DMP), Trent Semans Building, and the Duke Cancer Center at noon, and begin our walk at 12:15 p.m. While participating, please remember to properly wear your mask and maintain appropriate physical distancing at all times.
6.10.2020 at 5:15 am: Pediatric Visitation Restrictions Update
Effective Monday, June 8, two parent/guardian visitors are allowed to visit any inpatient in a pediatric area. This does not apply to pediatric patients in outpatient or procedural areas. After consulting with our infectious disease experts and other health system leaders, we have determined that this is a safe modification to our policy. We are continuing to review all of our visitor restrictions, and we will update the entire team as appropriate.
6.10.2020 at 5:12 am: Patient & Visitor Masking Reference (New)
This document outlines key takeaways regarding our universal masking policy for patients and visitors. It also includes guidance for acceptable face coverings.
6.10.2020 5:11 am: Criteria for Discontinuation of Special Airborne/Contact Isolation (Update)
This document provides updated guidance to healthcare workers on when it is appropriate to use a symptom-based strategy versus a test-based strategy to discontinue special airborne contact (SAC) isolation for patients with laboratory-confirmed or presumed diagnoses of COVID-19.
6.8.2020 at 5:23 am: Be a Leader – Mask in the Community
Wearing a mask helps prevent the spread of infection. While all of our team members are required to wear a mask when working in our hospitals or clinics, it is important to remember to wear a mask while out in public settings as well. We need your help to reduce the spread of infection, and wearing a mask is one important healthy behavior to model while out in the community.
6.8.2020 at 5:20 am: Patient & Visitor Talking Points (New)
This document provides talking points to communicate with patients and visitors and answer common questions. It also identifies key messages to reference while communicating about our response.
6.8.2020 at 5:16 am: Lab & Leave Program
Our DUHS Clinical Laboratories launched a no-appointment-required “Lab and Leave” phlebotomy program for our clinic patients in April. Patients taking advantage of this new program can have testing drawn while practicing safe physical distancing. Patients who have testing that is required STAT should be directed to clinics in Duke South. For questions about laboratory test ordering, call DUHS Laboratory Client Services at 919-613-8400.
6.8.2020 at 5:13 am: Critical Need for Blood Donors
Healthy, eligible blood donors are urgently needed to replenish our blood supply, which will help save countless lives. If you are able, please consider donating at an American Red Cross collection site as soon as possible. Visit the American Red Cross website and search by zip code to find a donation center near you.
6.8.2020 at 5:09 am: Special Droplet and Special Droplet & Contact Sign Ordering Reference (New)
Special Droplet and Special Droplet & Contact signs are now available for order in Eprint. Review this document for guidance to reorder these signs.
6.3.2020 at 5:17 am: Monitoring Visitor Restrictions
With the state of North Carolina in Phase 2 of lifting restrictions in place to slow the spread of infection, Duke Health is evaluating our policies on visitor restrictions. While we review possible changes, our top priority is the health and safety of our patients, visitors and team members. At this time, current visitor restrictions remain in place. You can view all of our current visitor restrictions here. Yesterday, we shared this update with all managers and physicians to outline the considerations we’re making while reviewing possible revisions.
6.3.2020 at 5:10 am: Team Member Universal Masking Updates
As more of our team members return to our clinical environments, we want to share an updated handout and FAQs to outline our current policy in effect regarding masking. These resources now reflect the importance to continue wearing a face covering while you are walking to and from your car, waiting for the bus or riding on the bus.
6.1.2020 at 5:19 am: Monitoring Visitor Restrictions
We have received feedback from our patients and team members about the importance of reviewing the restrictions currently in place. Our team is considering revising this policy as we work to enhance patient access to care. While we review possible changes, our top priority is the health and safety of our patients, visitors and team members. Our current restrictions align with visitor policies at all Triangle-area health systems, and we are working with them while considering how to safely revise our policies.
6.1.2020 at 5:15 am: Re-introduction of Nursing & Allied Health Learners
Our pre-licensure and graduate students from selected programs/schools will be re-entering the clinical environment today, June 1. We are intentionally taking a slow approach in order for our patients, staff and learners to remain safe. Here are some FAQs to provide more information as they reenter our environment.
6.1.2020 at 5:11 am: COVID-19 Testing Refusal – Position Statement and Patient Letter
For the safety of our patients, visitors and team members, Duke Health providers will not schedule, or will cancel, elective procedures for patients who refuse pre-procedural COVID-19 testing. This is a position statement and patient letter for any Duke Health provider faced with this scenario.
6.1.2020 at 5:09 am: Communications Cadence Update
To better streamline our communication, we will modify our regular task force email updates to Mondays and Wednesdays. We will continue to hold bi-weekly virtual town halls, update the COVID-19 website, share stories from across the health system in the "Inside Duke Health" newsletter, answer your questions through email to email@example.com and provide critical updates as needed.
6.1.2020 at 5:05 am: Updated Guidance on Working From Home
Earlier this month, we communicated that our administrative and non-clinical team members who are able to work from home effectively should continue to do so, with the approval of their supervisor.
Readiness to return will vary by teams and areas, as every offsite location has a different set of circumstances. Therefore, decisions about returning to work will be made at the local level. However, we do not anticipate a general return before August 1, as physical distancing remains a critical part of keeping our team members and the broader community safe. In addition, supply chain constraints for items such as hand sanitizer, soap and sanitizing wipes mean we must prioritize the distribution of these items for our patient care areas.
Team members whose primary or redeployment assignment requires them to be onsite to support operations will still need to report for those roles as directed. Leaders and teams are encouraged to review resources on best practices for working remotely and contact their local HR leader with any questions.
5.29.2020 at 5:18 am: Maestro Care Update: Exposure to COVID-19 Status
Beginning Thursday May 28, a new infection status, “Exposure to COVID-19” will be visible within Maestro Care for patients who have a known exposure to a person infected with COVID-19. See this document for further information. Please contact your facility's Infection Preventionist with questions.
5.29.2020 at 5:03 am: Infection Prevention Highlights to Protect Team Members
This document highlights many of the measures we have implemented at Duke Health to keep our team members safe while continuing to provide high-quality care to our patients. This is intended to provide to team members with a key overview of many of the changes made to protect our patients, visitors and each other.
5.27.2020 at 5:17 am: Place N95 Masks in Reprocessing Bins
All healthcare workers who wear an N95 mask must place their used mask in the appropriate bin for reprocessing. Please do not keep or take home N95 masks at the end of your shift.
5.27.2020 at 5:11 am: Appropriate Use of Anticoagulation as DVT Prophylaxis During COVID-19 Hospitalization
COVID-19 has been associated with an increased risk of venous thrombosis and pulmonary embolism. A clinical guidance document has been created by the Division of Hematology in consultation with other clinical leaders that provides recommendations for the appropriate use of anticoagulation as DVT prophylaxis during a COVID-19 hospitalization.
- Guidelines for Antithrombotic Therapy in Hospitalized Patients with COVID-19
- COVID-19 Inpatient Anticoagulation Protocol – for ICU and non-ICU patients
5.27.2020 at 5:03 am: Antibody Testing Patient FAQs
This document provides answers to frequently asked questions about antibody testing. This is a good resource to educate patients about antibody testing and what these test results could mean.
5.22.2020 at 5:20 am: Reminder: Wear Your Mask While Entering and Leaving Facilities
As part of our mandatory universal masking policy, all team members should wear their Duke-issued mask while entering and exiting facilities. When you leave your shift for the day, wear your mask while you are walking to your car, waiting for the bus and/or riding on the bus. Review this handout with more information about how to appropriately wear and store your mask.
5.22.2020 at 5:09 am: Standard Pay Practices Resume June 1
Effective June 1, we will restore our usual management practice of applying PTO and vacation time in instances where work is not being performed. Our availability for work policy will also apply. Those instructed by EOHW to stay home due to personal COVID-19 exposure or illness and are unable to work will continue to be paid their base rate of pay without using PTO.
5.22.2020 at 5:05 am: Tracheostomy Protocol During COVID-19
This document provides multidisciplinary guidance for safely performing tracheostomies and for post-tracheostomy care in patients who were diagnosed with COVID-19. Please note, there is a new recommendation to place previously COVID-infected, post-tracheostomy patients on special droplet and contact isolation during their incident hospital stay when they were treated for COVID. If they are readmitted less than 28 days after their initial test, the usual standard and transmission-based precautions apply.
5.20.2020 at 5:21 am: Additional Updates on Learners in our Environment
The anticipated return of students to the clinical training environment will include SubIs (MS4s) on May 18, PA students on May 26, NP students on June 1 and MS 2 MD students on June 15.
- Students may participate in the care of any patient, except those with COVID-19 or any other patient whose care requires use of N95 masks.
- Students may participate in the care of patients in contact isolation.
- Students may contribute to care in the operating rooms.
- Students will utilize the existing health system practices for screening of symptoms and use of face masks.
- Duke Health (SOM, DUHS and PDC) has jointly approved student participation (NP, PA, MD) in telehealth as long as students are acting in the same roles as prior to telehealth (i.e., the student may gather history, assist with the patient encounter and document the encounter as long as there is appropriate supervision). Appropriate supervision includes verification of any history obtained prior to the encounter, appropriate review of and use of appropriate attestations for documentation by preceptors. Here are tips for student participation in telehealth and secure chat.
5.20.2020 at 5:16 am: Clinical Trials Update
Duke University Health System is participating in a national study investigating the use of the antiviral drug Remdesivir to treat COVID-19. The FDA recently allowed Remdesivir to be used under an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA). The Duke Remdesivir allocation plan aligns with federal and state guidelines, making a small supply of the drug available for all three system hospitals. Prescribers and pharmacists should expect to receive more detailed information about this update soon.
5.20.2020 at 5:09 am: DUH Campus Parking Update
In April, temporary adjustments were made to parking access for some staff to park in alternative locations on the Duke University Hospital campus. Starting next week, these team members will be notified that they are to return to their assigned parking location.
5.20.2020 at 5:05 am: Disinfection Guidance for Inpatient Tablet & Accessories (New)
This document provides disinfection guidance for electronic equipment used across Duke Health for patients on isolation. The equipment includes tablets mounted on an IV pole, Bluetooth speakers, charging cords, etc.
5.20.2020 at 5:03 am: Guidance for Appropriate Repeat COVID-19 Testing (New)
This document provides guidance for appropriate repeat testing. Please note that all test orders available have gone through a rigorous validation process and that all results may be used as part of these repeat testing strategies.
5.18.2020 at 5:10 pm: Update on Learners at Duke Health
We are committed to safely bringing back our learners, and we’ve started a slow reintroduction of some learners in our environment. Fourth-year medical students are phasing into clinical rotations this week as a part of their next scheduled rotation. Physician leaders should coordinate with teams regarding the positive transition of bringing these learners back into our care teams. All learners are trained in new processes and protocols to support our COVID-19 response and following safe treatment practices.
Graduating PA students will restart on May 25 in order to finish on time, and second-year medical students who were removed from clinics in March will be returning on June 15, 2020, to complete their required clerkships.
5.18.2020 at 5:19 am: Wear Your Mask While Entering and Leaving Facilities
As a part of our mandatory universal masking policy, all team members should wear their Duke-issued mask while entering and exiting facilities. Please wear your mask while you are walking to your car, waiting for the bus and/or riding on the bus. Safely store your mask, and keep your mask with you to wear it again until you can return to screening and receive a new mask for the day.
5.18.2020 at 5:07 am: Vital Talk Communication Training Opportunity
Cambia Palliative Care Center of Excellence and the Institute for Human Caring are offering healthcare professionals free virtual training sessions for COVID-19 communication. These sessions will focus on four content areas (outpatient, ED, acute care and ICU) and will integrate a communication framework with concrete skills to navigate advance care planning and goals of care conversations in the COVID-19 era. Information on registration can be found on this document or you may register directly through the Institute for Human Caring website.
5.15.2020 at 5:11 am: Continue Practicing Physical Distancing
Duke Health would like all team members to maintain an awareness of proper physical distance and to continue using virtual means of connecting with others when possible. We still need to limit large gatherings and maintain distance, even while wearing masks. Please also continue to be mindful when in shared spaces like workrooms, breakrooms and other common spaces to practice physical distancing, frequently clean high-touch surfaces and be mindful when sharing food, as not taking proper precautions can lead an increased risk of exposure.
5.13.2020 at 5:06 am: Updated Isolation Signs Overview (new)
Isolation signs have been updated for special droplet precautions and special droplet and contact precautions. Please see the documents linked below for more information about these each of updated signs.
• Special Droplet Precautions
• Special Droplet and Contact Precautions
5.13.2020 at 5:03 am: Place N95 Masks in Reprocessing Bins
All healthcare workers who wear an N95 mask must place their used mask in the appropriate bin for reprocessing. Please refer to the instructions for extended use and reuse for more detailed instruction.
5.13.2020 at 5:16 am: PPE FAQs
Please read this document for answers to some common questions regarding PPE – including the rationale for why certain decisions have been made. Thank you to all of our team members for staying up to date on the latest recommendations.
5.13.2020 at 5:06 am: Infection Prevention 101
This document outlines the basic principles behind standard and transmission-based precautions and explains the “why” behind PPE recommendations for caring for COVID-suspected or confirmed patients.
5.13.2020 at 5:03 am: Criteria for Discontinuation of Special Airborne Contact Isolation
This updated document includes steps to follow when discontinuing Special Airborne Contact isolation in the inpatient setting and re-isolation of patients who return to the ED or inpatient care after a prior diagnosis of COVID-19.
5.13.2020 at 5:01 am: Sharing Your Experience with the Hero Registry
The Duke Clinical Research Institute (DCRI) is enrolling healthcare workers in the Healthcare Worker Exposure Response and Outcomes (HERO) Registry, and they need your help. The HERO Registry is asking anyone who works in a setting where people receive healthcare to participate. There is no cost to join. Participants will receive surveys, opportunities to participate in future studies and learnings from the research community. The registry will follow a protocol developed by the DCRI and data guidelines to keep healthcare worker information secure. To sign up for the HERO Registry, visit their website.
5.11.2020 at 5:24 am: Recommended PPE for Outpatient Management of Asymptomatic Patients (New)
This document provides recommendations for the required PPE for a variety of visits in outpatient settings with differential risk. Providers should follow Standard and Transmission-Based Precautions in addition to the precautions recommended in the Ambulatory Infection Prevention Policy.
5.11.2020 at 5:23 am: Management of Patients with Suspected or Confirmed COVID-19 in the Outpatient Setting (New)
This document provides recommendations for outpatient management of patients with suspected or confirmed after receiving a COVID-19 diagnosis.
5.11.2020 at 5:18 am: Position Statement and FAQs for Antibody Testing for COVID-19 (New)
This document provides guidance to physicians to facilitate conversations with patients regarding requests for antibody testing for COVID-19 (SARS-2-CoV).
5.11.2020 at 5:09 am: Clinical Location Screening Update – Temperature Screenings
Beginning May 11, Duke Health will enhance screenings at all clinical locations for patients, visitors and team members to include temperature checks with touchless infrared thermometers. As always, if a team member screens positive, he or she will be directed to call the Duke COVID-19 hotline at 919-385-0429 for next steps. Team members must have their Duke ID badge with them in order to enter the facility and begin their shift.
5.11.2020 at 5:03 am: Updated Telehealth Resources Available
The documents below provide guidance and tips for using telehealth during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Smart List for Adding Consent Attestation for Video Visits During COVID-19 Pandemic (.TELEVIDEOVISITCONSENTPRIVACYIDTIMECODING)
- Guidance for Providing Telehealth Services During the COVID-19 Pandemic
- Duke Primary Care Quick Reference Guide for Scheduled, Chargeable Telephone Visits
5.8.2020 at 5:39 am: EOHW Health Profile Error Message
Employees may have received a request from Employee Occupational Health & Wellness (EOHW) to complete a health profile this week. The email to these employees was a technical issue and a follow-up clarification email has been provided to every employee who was affected. If you have any questions about this, please call the COVID Hotline 919-385-0429 option 1 which is open 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., seven days a week.
5.8.2020 at 5:37 am: Phase 1 of North Carolina’s Reopen Plan Starts Today
The first phase of the three-phase plan to reopen North Carolina goes into effect today at 5 p.m. Non-essential businesses such as salons and gyms will remain closed, and the stay-at-home order will remain in effect yet modified for necessary tasks. Durham County requires people who leave their home to wear masks and we encourage our team members to be leaders in this area.
5.8.2020 at 5:34 am: Clinical Trials Update
Duke University Hospital participated in a national study investigating the use of the antiviral drug Remdesivir to treat COVID-19. Positive results from this study show the drug could shorten the recovery time of more than 1,000 hospitalized patients from 15 days to 11 days. To learn more about this trial, check out the recording of our last Duke Health town hall from our infectious disease team.
5.8.2020 at 5:23 am: Supply Chain Update
Recently, we received a large shipment of more than 2 million shoe covers, and we expect 75,000 more reusable isolation gowns delivered by the end of the month. Large orders with 3M for N95s are still in place, and it is critical that all of our areas, including ambulatory, continue to use our safe process for decontaminating masks for reuse.
5.8.2020 at 5:18 am: Human Resources on Returning to the Workplace
As North Carolina enters Phase I of lifting shelter-in-place orders today, those team members who can continue to effectively perform their work from home should continue to do so with the agreement from their supervisor. We do not anticipate any changes to current work arrangements before June 1. The safety and well-being of our team members are our top priority, and we commit to communicating what to expect throughout this important process.
5.8.2020 at 5:09 am: Appropriate PPE During COVID-19 Response (Update)
See this updated infographic for concise and simplified recommendations for what PPE healthcare workers should wear during the COVID-19 response.
5.8.2020 at 5:04 am: Respiratory Therapy Practices During the COVID-19 Pandemic (New)
View this document as a guide for the safe delivery of respiratory therapeutics during the COVID-19 pandemic.
5.6.2020 at 5:14 am: Life Support FAQs
Based on recommendations from American Heart Association, Duke Health has extended the expiration of life support certification. Team members have at least until the end of the calendar year to recertify. The health system life support team will be publishing a plan within the next few weeks to allow people who have expired certifications or whose certifications will expire through December 2020 to catch up. You can view an FAQ about this process here.
5.6.2020 at 5:07 am: Social Media Posts
Each staff member has the responsibility to protect patient privacy. This is a reminder that discussing Protected Health Information on social media or posting photos of a patient or a patient’s body part, wound, etc. to any non-Duke site, including your personal social media site, is prohibited. You may not do so even when the patient agrees or even when the patient cannot be identified.
5.4.2020 at 5:32 am: Redefining Our “Normal” Video
As we plan for what’s next, we’re grateful for your commitment to caring for our patients, their loved ones and each other. We’re all adjusting to a lot of new and redefining our “normal.” Check out this video to learn more about how our team is prioritizing keeping our patients and team members safe as we enhance access to care.
5.4.2020 at 5:13 am: Updated CDC Guidance on Discontinuing Isolation
CDC guidance for discontinuing transmission-based precautions for patients with COVID-19 infection has been updated to extend the duration of isolation from seven days to 10 days since symptoms first appeared. This update was made based on evidence that suggests a longer duration of viral shedding and captures a greater proportion of contagious patients.
The following documents have been updated on the COVID-19 site to reflect this change in CDC guidance. After-visit summary (AVS) updates will be revised in Epic as soon as possible:
• AVS for known COVID-19 inpatients being discharged from hospital: .COVIDAVSDISCHARGEINSTRUCTIONS and .COVIDAVSDISCHARGEINSTRUCTIONSSPANISH.
• AVS for patients with no symptoms or mild symptoms who do not need hospital treatment: .COVIDAVSINSTRUCTIONS and .COVIDAVSINSTRUCTIONSSPANISH.
• Ability to Work/Return to Work for Healthcare Providers
• CDC Guidance: Employee Risk Assessment for COVID-19 Exposure
• Criteria for Discontinuation of Special Airborne Contact Isolation
5.4.2020 at 5:09 am: COVID-19 Room Entry Logs No Longer Required
In coordination with changes in reporting requirements from the CDC and the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, DUHS is no longer requiring room entry logs to be completed for staff or visitors entering the rooms of patients with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 infection. Any breaches in PPE or suspected exposure within these rooms should be reported through the Employee Health Blood and Body Fluid Hotline at 919-684-8115. Please ensure that existing room entry logs for healthcare personnel and visitor monitoring are disposed of securely (i.e., in the shred bin).
5.1.2020 at 5:18 am: Communication Cadence Update
To better streamline our communication, we will modify our regular task force email updates to Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. We will continue to hold weekly virtual town halls, update the COVID-19 website, share stories from across the health system in our newsletter "Inside COVID-19," answer your questions through email to firstname.lastname@example.org and provide any critical updates through email as needed.
5.1.2020 at 5:09 am: Supply Chain Update
Right now, we are confident in the supplies we have available to continue providing exceptional care for our patients. We now expect another 2 million earloop masks to be delivered in multiple shipments by the end of the month, 14,000 isolation gowns are expected this week, and another 50,000 will be delivered this month. Lastly, we expect 2 million more shoe covers to arrive next week.
4.30.2020 at 5:04 am: Enhancing Access to Patient Care – Key Messages
Here are approved key messages to share with our patients about how our team is committed to safety while we prepare for this next phase of our response.
4.29.2020 at 5:06 am: Preparing Our Environment
While we work to prepare our facilities to re-engage our patients, below are just a few of the changes being made at some locations to reduce the spread of infection.
- Increased use of telehealth to connect with our patients, including phone and video visits
- Encouraging physical distancing and allowing extra time between appointments
- Enhanced visitor restrictions to limit the number of people in our facilities
- Expanded hours and appointments available on the weekend when appropriate
- Patient, visitor and staff screening for symptoms prior to entering our facilities
- Increased signage at all clinics to encourage physical distancing and hand hygiene
- Mandatory masking and hand hygiene for all patients, visitors and team members
- Installing additional hand sanitizing stations at our facilities
4.28.2020 at 5:08 am: Ambulatory Surgery Update
On May 4, we plan to start opening more outpatient environments for ambulatory surgeries. We are making numerous changes to expand upon our existing safety procedures for team members and patients to keep them safe and protect them from possible exposure to COVID-19. More information about this gradual process to reschedule surgeries will be provided in the coming days and weeks.
4.27.2020 at 5:16 am: Financial Aid for Dependent Care
Applications are now being accepted for the Duke Health COVID-19 Dependent Care Financial Assistance Fund, established to offset the costs of dependent care during our COVID-19 response efforts. All Duke Health employees in good standing are eligible to apply, and applications are being accepted through May 29. Team members can learn more and access the application here.
4.27.2020 at 5:13 am: Meal and Medicine Resources for Patients in Home Isolation
This document is designed for patients who must stay home in isolation due to suspected or confirmed COVID-19 infection. It provides basic food safety tips for handling, cooking and storing food as well as resources for food and medication delivery services.
4.27.2020 at 5:04 am: Tips for Safely Transitioning Between Work and Home
This resource provides more specific infection prevention best practices, including what to do with your work clothing and work shoes and how best to clean and disinfect your home. It is designed to help healthcare workers returning home from work keep themselves and their loved ones safe from potential COVID-19 exposure. (This document replaces the former “Guidelines for Healthcare Workers upon Returning Home from Work.”)
4.24.2020 at 5:23 am: PPE Product Substitutions
Supplies, including PPE, may look different and come from different manufacturers but are just as safe and reliable as the items regularly stocked. The substituted products have gone through a rigorous testing and approval process by our infection prevention and occupational and environmental safety office.
4.24.2020 at 5:22 am: Contact/Reference List for COVID-19 Topics
Please view this one-pager for contact information and document references regarding common questions related to COVID-19, including testing, PPE, interpreter services and employee health.
4.23.2020 at 5:28 am: Face Shield Tip Sheet
This resource can be used to help healthcare workers determine the best process for reuse and extended use of their face shield. Specifics about the disposable face shields as compared to the extended use face shields are included in this resource.
4.23.2020 at 5:13 am: Head Covering PPE Recommendations
Head coverings, including bouffant caps, headbands with buttons and surgical caps, are not CDC recommended or required PPE for the care of suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients (outside of performing sterile procedures). This document provides more information about Duke Health recommendations on head coverings for our team members.
4.23.2020 at 5:07 am: Interim Recommendations for Care of Inpatients from Congregate Living Facilities
We continue to see COVID-19 outbreaks in our community from skilled nursing facilities and prisons. This document provides additional clarification for the management of inpatients being admitted to the hospital from congregate living settings.
4.22.2020 at 5:19 am: FAQs for Decontaminating N95 Respirators
Duke Health is using a safe, proven process to decontaminate used N95 respirators using vaporized hydrogen peroxide. This decontamination technology and method has been used for years, and several leading health systems across the nation are now using it to reuse N95 respirators. Read these frequently asked questions about how this process kills germs, including viruses, while maintaining the integrity of the fit and seal without degrading the material.
4.22.2020 at 5:03 am: PPE Documents Guide
To help team members navigate the PPE-related resources in the COVID-19 document library, this PPE documents guide has been created to show the information in helpful categories, with dates to indicate when it was created or last updated.
4.21.2020 at 5:08 am: Updated Instructions for Extended Use and Reuse
This document provides clarification on the re-use and extended use of face masks (including surgical masks, tie masks and earloop/procedural masks) and face shields. It specifically addresses situations in which patients are on transmission-based precautions (i.e., droplet, contact and/or contact special enteric).
4.20.2020 at 5:15 am: PPE Reminder – No Head Coverings on Shoes
This document provides clarification on the re-use and extended use of face masks (including surgical masks, tie masks and earloop/procedural masks) and face shields. It specifically addresses situations in which patients are on transmission-based precautions (i.e., droplet, contact and/or contact special enteric).
4.20.2020 at 5:02 am: Masking Flyers – In Every Space, Cover Your Face
The flyers below can be printed out and displayed in staff common areas around hospitals and clinics to help Duke Health team members remember to wear their Duke-issued face masks throughout the day.
4.20.2020 at 5:01 am: Pediatric After-Visit Summary Now Includes Tip Sheets
The after-visit summary for children up to age 18 will now automatically include the language preference-appropriate tip sheets that illustrate best practices to prevent the spread of COVID-19. For those providing care to pediatric patients, this change will save the step of manually adding this information to patient instructions. As a reminder, the tip sheets are also available as system-level dot phrases in English, Spanish and Arabic as: .COVIDEASYTIPSPEDS, .COVIDEASYTIPSPEDSSPANISH and .COVIDEASYTIPSPEDSARABIC.
4.17.2020 at 5:09 am: Clarification for Donning and Doffing PAPRs
- All PAPRs are to be donned prior to donning the isolation gown so that the PAPR belt is underneath the gown while the PAPR pack motor is exposed on the back and has adequate circulation and ventilation.
- If your PAPR hood has a shroud; the shroud should be worn outside of the gown.
- If there is a double shroud, the inner layer will be on the inside of your gown with the outer layer on the outside.
- Initial disinfection of the PAPR hood is done prior to doffing isolation gown. Then, follow established step-by-step doffing procedures and instructions for extended use, reuse and disinfection.
4.17.2020 at 5:06 am: Masking Reminders
As an important reminder for the safety of all Duke Health team members, all staff members are required to wear face masks in common areas at all times. It is especially important to limit the number of unmasked individuals who are in close proximity with one another while eating and drinking in breakrooms, workrooms, workstations, the cafeteria, courtyards or any other settings where people can gather.
4.16.2020 at 5:26 am: Guidance for De-escalating Isolation After a Negative Test for COVID-19
See below for a summary of the available discharge instructions/after-visit summaries (AVS) for patients with known or suspected COVID-19:
- AVS for known COVID-19 inpatients being discharged from hospital (new). This document was created for patients with known COVID-19 infection who are being discharged from the hospital. It is available in English and Spanish, with the following Epic dot phrases: .COVIDAVSDISCHARGEINSTRUCTIONS and .COVIDAVSDISCHARGEINSTRUCTIONSSPANISH (coming soon in Epic).
- AVS for patients with no symptoms or mild symptoms who do not need hospital treatment (update). This document has been updated to include instructions for asymptomatic patients. It is available in English and Spanish, with the following Epic dot phrases: .COVIDAVSINSTRUCTIONS and .COVIDAVSINSTRUCTIONSSPANISH (coming soon in Epic).
- AVS for pediatric patients (no change). This two-page document illustrates best practices for preventing the spread of COVID-19. It is available in English, Spanish and Arabic, with the following Epic dot phrases: .COVIDEASYTIPSPEDS, .COVIDEASYTIPSPEDSSPANISH and .COVIDEASYTIPSPEDSARABIC.
- AVS for low health literacy patients (no change). This two-page document illustrates in icons best practices for preventing the spread of COVID-19. This document is the same as the AVS for pediatric patients, with the following Epic dot phrases: .COVIDLOWLITERACY, .COVIDLOWLITERACYSPANISH and .COVIDLOWLITERACYARABIC.
- AVS addendum for additional instructions (new). This Word document can be edited by staff working to discharge patients. It was created in response to the request to provide written instructions to patients in addition to the AVS instructions available in PDF format.
4.16.2020 at 5:14 am: Guidance for De-escalating Isolation After a Negative Test for COVID-19
This flow diagram has been updated to reflect changes in local epidemiology with regard to newly identified outbreaks of COVID-19 in congregate living facilities.
4.16.2020 at 5:07 am: Tip Sheet on PPE Extended Use and Reuse
This tip sheet aims to help healthcare workers better understand protocols for the reuse and extended use of face masks, face shields, N95 respirators and PAPR hoods.
4.16.2020 at 5:01 am: PAPR Hood Donning, Doffing and Disinfection Instructions
The following documents are intended to educate team members on the proper donning, doffing and disinfection procedures for powered air-purifying respirators (PAPRs).
- This step-by-step guide provides instructions for using the 3M Versaflo PAPR.
- These PAPR hood instructions explain the differences in donning the short headcover, hood with single shroud and hood with double shroud.
- This one-pager illustrates the proper PAPR disinfection process for special airborne/contact isolation, regardless of which type of PAPR hood is used.
- This document on PAPR hood reuse, extended use and disinfection has been updated to reflect this information.
4.15.2020 at 5:11 am: What to do with N95 Masks after Certain Procedures
This table describes what healthcare workers should do with their N95 masks following procedures and patient care. This document is a supplement to the document titled "N95 Respirators and Face Shields: Instructions for Extended Use and Reuse."
4.15.2020 at 5:04 am: Homemade Masks Allowed for Patients and Visitors
Patients, visitors and caregivers who choose to wear personal homemade masks are permitted to wear them in Duke hospitals and clinics. This document illustrates the masking protocol for patients, visitors and caregivers and can be displayed in common spaces. As a reminder, Duke Health team members are not permitted to wear personal homemade masks while at work.
4.14.20: Video about Duke Health Surge Planning
For months, Duke Health has been preparing for a rise of COVID-19 patients in our area. We have developed comprehensive plans to respond to the evolving needs of our community. As the surge projections continue to adjust, we feel we are well prepared no matter what need may arise. This short, animated video explains more about surge planning and how we're prepared to test, triage and care for patients with COVID-19 over the coming weeks.
4.14.2020 at 5:19 am: COVID-19 Patient Caregiver Accommodations
To support our team, Duke Health will offer hotel accommodations for direct caregivers of patients with COVID-19 in hospitals. Deeply discounted rates will also be available to all Duke Health team members. Each hospital will provide more specific information soon regarding the availability of this temporary housing and how to apply.
4.14.2020 at 5:04 am: Tips for Wearing your Mask
We understand that wearing a mask may present some challenges, and we want to provide some helpful guidance for properly removing and storing your mask while eating, drinking and going to the restroom. Please view this handout with more tips for getting through the day with your mask.
4.13.2020 at 5:33 am: Place Used N95 Masks in Reprocessing Bins
All healthcare workers who wear an N95 mask must place their used mask in the appropriate bin for reprocessing at the following times: end of shift, after performing an aerosol-generating procedure and if contamination occurs during patient care. Please do not keep or take home N95 masks at the end of your shift, as your mask could be contaminated, and that puts you and others at risk for potential COVID-19 infection. Please refer to the instructions for extended use and reuse for more detailed instruction.
4.13.2020 at 5:17 am: Sample Collection Updates
NP swab collection and transport instructions include important updates. Samples that will be sent through the pneumatic tube system within hospitals should be double-bagged before tube transport. Kits will now contain a second bag to facilitate this change in practice. NP swabs should be inserted and rotated for five seconds rather than 15 seconds.
4.13.2020 at 5:09 am: Guidance for Healthcare Worker PPE During COVID-19 Response
This document outlines recommended PPE for healthcare workers to wear during the COVID-19 response. Specific clinical guidance is provided for inpatient, ED, procedural areas, outpatient clinics and outpatient/inpatient radiology departments. This infographic provides concise and simplified recommendations for what PPE healthcare workers should wear during the COVID-19 response. The infographic is meant to supplement but not replace the “Guidance for Healthcare Worker PPE During COVID-19 Response” document.
4.13.2020 at 5:06 am: Recommendations for Negative Room Pressure and/or HEPA Filtration
This one-pager highlights the importance of wearing appropriate PPE during aerosol-generating procedures. It also explains the role of negative room pressurization or HEPA filtration and provides recommendations for what to do if a HEPA filter is not available.
4.13.2020 at 5:02 am: Criteria for Discontinuation of Special Airborne/Contact Isolation
This document provides updated guidance to healthcare workers on when to discontinue special airborne contact isolation for (1) lab-confirmed COVID-19 patients and (2) when COVID-19 diagnosis is presumed based on clinical presentation but COVID-19 PCR testing is negative.
4.10.2020 at 5:28 am: Guidance for De-escalating Isolation After a Negative COVID-19 Test
This flow diagram outlines a recommended decision algorithm for symptomatic patients with a negative COVID-19 nasopharyngeal swab whose clinical presentation remains highly suspicious for active COVID-19 infection. We ask that you review this carefully and use it in your clinical decision-making.
4.10.2020 at 5:19 am: Guidance for Procedural Areas Caring for Suspected or Confirmed COVID-19 Patients
This guidance is for healthcare workers in procedural areas and explains best practices, including when to use HEPA filters in procedural rooms for patients with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 infection.
4.10.2020 at 5:14 am: Isolation Procedures and COVID-19 Testing for Asymptomatic Immunocompromised Patients in the Inpatient Setting
This document provides guidance on testing and isolation procedures for the hematopoietic stem cell transplants (HSCT), solid organ transplants (SOT) and acute leukemic patients who are admitted to the hospital.
4.10.2020 at 5:12 am: Universal Masking Update
Until further notice, all visitors will wear masks in addition to our team members and patients. All patients will wear masks in common spaces, such as waiting rooms, cafeterias and hallways. Hospitalized patients do not need to wear masks in their rooms.
4.9.2020 at 5:23 am: Reminder: No Makeup while Wearing N95s and PAPR hoods
We have started collecting N95 respirators and PAPR hoods for reuse, and it is important to understand how wearing any makeup – including any facial oils, moisturizers, shaving balm, aftershave, beard oil, lipstick, foundation/concealer and blush – can make the masks appear soiled, even after the decontamination process. For this reason, we ask that healthcare workers who will wear N95s and PAPR hoods during their shift refrain from wearing makeup.
4.9.2020 at 5:18 am: Tips for Healthcare Workers Returning Home from Work
If you are a healthcare worker caring for patients with suspected or known COVID-19, follow the guidelines outlined in this document to protect your family upon returning from work.
4.9.2020 at 5:06 am: Priority Testing for Special Populations
We request that clinicians with clinical use cases that require a COVID-19 test result in less than 24 hours complete this short survey to allow aggregation of the requests and optimize the use of our internal testing capabilities. The survey will close at 5 p.m. on Sunday, April 12, and representatives from infection prevention, laboratory medicine, and the Chief Medical Officers will review and prioritize the requests.
4.8.2020 at 5:32 am: Returning N95 Masks
After wearing your N95 mask, you must return it to the appropriate bin unless it is visibly soiled so it can be processed for reuse. Our chosen method for decontaminating and reusing N95 masks is proven and safe. You’re welcome to view this video for more information about how the decontamination process works.
4.7.2020 at 5:06 am: Documentation and Coding
As a reminder for providers, please continue to accurately capture the conditions of our patients as it affects public health reporting, resource allocation and quality of care. For helpful tips, reference this document.
4.7.2020 at 5:00 am: Dashboard
If you would like to stay informed about the current status of testing and COVID-19 cases at Duke, view the dashboard developed by Performance Services. To access it, you must be on the Duke Health network or connected to the VPN.
4.6.2020: Video about the decontamination process for N95 masks
4.6.2020 at 5:32 am: Conclusion of Flu Season
In light of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the mitigation strategies implemented and after consultation with the Duke Program for Infection Prevention, we are defining Monday, April 6 as the official end of the flu season. For the purposes of the Duke Health HCW Flu Vaccination Policy, new hires/providers/volunteers who are joining Duke Health on or after Monday, April 6 will not be required to be vaccinated against the flu or have an approved exemption, however they will be required to comply with the policy during the Fall 2020 flu vaccination period.
4.6.2020 at 5:18 am: Recommendations for Safely Discharging a COVID-19 Positive Inpatient who Continues to Require Isolation Precautions
This document provides guidance to staff on minimizing the possibility of exposure during COVID-19 positive inpatient discharge while navigating out of the building.
4.6.2020 at 5:02 am: Pre-procedural Guidelines for COVID-19 Testing and PPE Use
This document outlines the Duke Health recommendations for the use of testing and related PPE for procedures performed in the non-operating room environment.
4.3.2020 at 5:44 am: Tips to Prevent the Spread of COVID-19: Pediatrics After-Visit Summary
This document is for patients with low health literacy skills, including children, and illustrates several tips for preventing the spread of COVID-19. Versions in English and Spanish are available.
4.3.2020 at 5:19 am: Pre-operative and Pre-procedural Screening Test for Asymptomatic Patients
A pre-operative inpatient and outpatient COVID-19 screening test for asymptomatic surgery patients is now available. Please refer to the testing guidelines and the Maestro Care tips sheet before placing the order.
4.3.2020 at 5:04 am: Staffing Hub
We are preparing for additional staffing needs in critical areas, both clinical and non-clinical. To support these efforts, we have created the Duke Health Staffing Hub.
4.2.2020 at 6:07 am: COVID-19 Testing Decision Trees
The COVID-19 testing decision trees have been updated and simplified for the following settings: adult ambulatory, pediatric ambulatory, ED/inpatient hospital day less than or equal to 3, and inpatient hospital day greater than 3.
4.2.2020 at 5:33 am: Inpatient & Outpatient Donning and Doffing Procedures
These step-by-step donning and doffing procedures for inpatient and outpatient settings have been updated in an effort to safely conserve PPE for staff.
4.2.2020 at 5:05 am: Face Mask and Face Shield: Extended Use and Reuse
This document has been updated to reflect the new universal masking protocols and to address droplet precautions for patient care interactions.
4.1.2020 at 6:17 am: Masking Protocols and Frequently Asked Questions
To help you answer questions from colleagues and patients, we developed this one-sheet with instructions and frequently asked questions.
3.31.2020 at 4:00 pm:
Starting today, all team members will be required to wear a face mask while working at one of our clinical sites.
Watch the video for an overview of the new process, including how to wear and care for your mask.
3.26.2020 at 6:00 am: Employee Screenings
Starting today, we are implementing team member COVID-19 screenings. If a team member screens positive, he or she will be directed to call the Duke COVID-19 hotline at 919-385-0429 for next steps. Look for communication from your local entity regarding specifics for your work area.
3.25.2020: Personal Protective Equipment Leadership Update
We want to make sure you feel confident in our approach and secure in your protective equipment. Check out this video from our COVID-19 task force leadership for answers to your questions regarding our current and potential policies for using PPE.
3.25.2020 at 6:43 am: Indications and Procedures to Re-use Surgical and Earloop Masks
Please review this document which outlines instructions for re-using surgical and earloop masks for many healthcare worker groups.
3.25.2020 at 6:43 am: Childcare Coverage
If you have childcare needs, please fill out this survey by Monday, March 30 so that we can understand the likely use of these services. Someone from our team will be in direct contact about potential options. This is a new work stream, so although there are limited spots available right now, we expect more to come online soon.
3.25.2020 at 6:14 am: Novel Decontamination of Masks
In an effort to conserve our N95 face masks to reduce infection, our research and clinical teams have confirmed a way to use existing vaporized hydrogen peroxide methods to decontaminate the masks so they can be reused. We've been using this proven technology and decontamination method for years in our bio containment laboratory, and we will transition to using it as a method for cleaning masks for reuse at all three of our hospitals. Our infection prevention team will lead coordination of this effort.
3.24.2020 at 8:00 am: Health Care Worker Ability to Work Management Plan
This new resource from EOHW provides new protocols, testing guidelines and returning to work criteria for all Duke Health team members.
If you are feeling ill or have a question, please call the Duke COVID-19 Hotline at 919-385-0429, option 1, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Beginning March 25, hours will be expanded to 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.