On March 13, after the President declared a national emergency, Stillwater Medical enacted their incident command post to begin planning and implementing processes to address the possible influx of COVID-19 patients. Tasks addressed immediately on that date included setting up an emergency operations plan, conducting an inventory of critical supplies, setting up a respiratory distress unit and discouraging hospital visitors.
“Even before the Governor had asked for a formal surge plan, we had already begun planning to increase supplies, hospital beds and ventilators in preparation of a possible surge,” said Denise Webber, Stillwater Medical CEO.
Webber said that in the days and weeks to follow, Stillwater Medical tightened visitor restrictions, reduced and postponed non-urgent services, and began cross training nurses and other personnel into roles where they may be needed most.
With full implementation of the emergency declaration by the state, Stillwater Medical started daily reporting which includes personal protective equipment (PPE) on hand, ventilators available, bed count, ER daily visits, general capacity, and COVID-19 test kits on hand.
“Our current number of days of PPE on hand continues to hover around 14 days,” said Webber. “These numbers are reported daily to the State Health Department. The overall state plan also gives and overview of our state’s capacity in relation to the need in the event of a surge of patients. More information on the state surge plan can be found on the Governor’s website at https://www.governor.ok.gov.”
Stillwater Medical has developed and begun implementation of a surge plan to increase bed capacity by 40%. This includes adding additional critical care beds, more than tripling ventilator capacity, doubling the amount of negative pressure rooms and identifying several alternate care sites that could be used as needed.
“While COVID-19 is something we continue to plan for daily, I am incredibly proud of our team members at Stillwater Medical who have been so responsive and willing to rise to the various challenges. They continue to provide exceptional care and compassion to those we serve.”