DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – As local hospitals gear up for a likely surge in patients due to COVID-19, Premier Health is working to keep its resources organized through its regional referral center.
The center helps manage patients coming into all five of its hospitals, including Miami Valley Hospital, as well as two freestanding emergency departments. Now, they say the operation will be a big help as they care for patients with coronavirus.
The regional referral center opened in September, several months before the pandemic started, to help coordinate resources and move patients around its facilities. It also helps make sure patients are placed under the right level and type of care.
Premier Health officials say the center also coordinates transportation, helping to manage the company’s ambulances, mobile intensive care unit, and CareFlight.
With the COVID-19 pandemic, they say the center is a huge asset to help patients get the care they need.
“We have a lot of small community, rural hospitals that we serve and have served for a long time that need to transfer patients for tertiary care, but when faced with something like the COVID situation, if they’re trying to make sure their EDs and their hospitals will be able to manage the flow, it really helps them quite a bit because they are able to quickly get their patients transferred and get things organized very quickly,” said Candy Skidmore, Vice President of Service Integration for Emergency and Trauma Service Lines at Premier Health.
Premier says about 75 people total work at the facility in Dayton, and it operates 24/7.
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