AdventHealth prepared for coronavirus

A woman reviews her test results with her doctor.

ORLANDO, Fla., March 2, 2020 — As the first cases of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) have been confirmed in Florida, AdventHealth leaders in the Orlando region are prepared to treat any potential patients.

“AdventHealth has a robust infection prevention program and policies that ensures patients, team members and the greater community are safeguarded should we treat a patient with coronavirus. Our hospitals and outpatient locations — including Centra Care and AdventHealth Medical Group practices — are prepared to treat a patient,” said Dr. Vincent Hsu, Infection Control Officer for AdventHealth’s Central Florida Division. “The risk for coronavirus infection for Floridians remains low. However, it’s important that we remain vigilant and take measures to minimize risk, such as routine hand-washing and staying home if you are sick.

The following information is designed to assist Central Florida media in their coverage of COVID-19 as it pertains to AdventHealth. We recommend reporters speak with the Department of Health and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for information about specific patients in Florida.

Q: Does AdventHealth have a confirmed coronavirus patient in Central Florida?


Q: What is AdventHealth doing to prepare for a coronavirus patient?

AdventHealth leaders have been planning for and are prepared for a patient with coronavirus. These preparations include:

  • Educating physicians and clinical teams on the latest guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Florida Department of Health.
  • Screening all patients at care entry points at all facilities.
  • Deploying measures at our facilities, screening posters and questionnaires, that ensure we are capturing patient travel history and symptoms.
  • Working with our vendors and internal teams to ensure we have adequate supplies such as masks, protective equipment for team members, wipes and hand sanitizers.
  • Established a multidisciplinary leadership team who is working around-the-clock to ensure we have capacity, supplies, equipment and staffing to handle a potential coronavirus patient or influx of patients.
  • All of our hospitals are equipped to rapidly identify, isolate and care for a suspected or confirmed coronavirus patient.

Q: Does AdventHealth have a test for coronavirus?

There is no commercial test available for hospitals, physician practices or other outpatient facilities. All tests are sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Florida Department of Health.

When a patient comes in who meets the screening criteria as dictated by the CDC, physicians will also perform tests, as appropriate, to rule out other potential illnesses such as the flu or mononucleosis.

Q: What are the symptoms of coronavirus?
Common coronaviruses usually cause mild to moderate upper-respiratory tract illnesses, like the common cold. Most people are infected with these viruses at some point in their lives, and symptoms may include headache, cough, sore throat, runny nose and a fever. Coronaviruses can also sometimes cause illnesses like pneumonia and bronchitis.

Most patients with respiratory symptoms do not have COVID - 2019 and likely have a more common pathogen (influenza, RSV, other respiratory viruses, bacterial).

Q. Where should someone go if they think they have coronavirus?

  • If someone who is otherwise healthy and has a fever or sore throat, they should call their primary care physician, Centra Care or utilize eCare services.
  • If someone is immune compromised or has underlying health conditions and have COVID-19 symptoms, they should contact their personal physician.
  • If someone has severe respiratory distress with symptoms also including a fever, cough, shortness of breath etc., they should go to urgent care or the closest emergency department.
  • If someone has no symptoms but is concerned for other reasons (such as if they traveled on an airplane), they should monitor themselves at home.

Q. What can someone do to minimize their chances of contracting COVID-19?

  • Wash your hands thoroughly and often.
  • If you are sick, stay home and minimize the risk of infecting those around you.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, mouth and nose.