Information for Patients & Families

MaineGeneral's Steps to Limit COVID-19

As Maine CDC Director Dr. Nirav Shah has so eloquently said, no one should delay needed medical treatment.

Receiving the right care, at the right time, at the right place has never been more important. As we plan, prepare and practice for our “new normal” and the reopening our health care system, we want to assure you that we are taking a phased approach to making sure you and our staff are safe as you get the health care services you need.

We know some patients have delayed getting care while we have treated COVID-19 patients. However, we recognize not all care can be delayed any longer and many patients need to be seen.

We are reaching out to patients who we believe need to be scheduled for in-office or in-hospital care. If you have a health care concern for which you would like to be seen, please call your primary care provider and they will help determine the right level of care for you.

We are not opening back up to elective procedures at this time.

Our medical directors have developed the appropriate screening protocols at each location and for each service required. This is for the safety of patients and staff. Depending on your type of visit or procedure, you may have your temperature taken and be asked COVID-19 screening questions.

Enhanced cleaning will continue in all MaineGeneral facilities. Additionally, for outpatient practices, non-infectious patients will be seen in the morning; those with symptoms will be seen in the afternoon.

Just as people wear a mask when in a public setting, and based on CDC and Joint Commission recommendations, please wear a face covering when you come to one of our MaineGeneral facilities. If you don’t have your own face covering and need one, we will provide one to you when you arrive.

As you know, any change in the way COVID-19 presents itself in our community could change our plans at any time. We continue to work with the Maine CDC and the other hospitals in the state to make sure we are taking the appropriate precautions as we move forward.

We look forward to providing the quality patient-centered care to you and your family that you’ve come to expect from us.

The following COVID-19 limiting steps remain in place:

  • Patients and visitors at the Alfond Center for Health (ACH) and Thayer Center for Health (TCH) must enter through the main entrances. Outside of the main entrance posted hours, the Emergency Department (ED) entrance is the only public entrance available. Patients and visitors of the Harold Alfond Center for Cancer Care (HACCC) also must enter through that facility’s main entrance.
  • All people entering a MaineGeneral facility will be screened inside the entrance by a staff member asking these questions:
    • Do you have any upper respiratory infection symptoms (fever, cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, loss of taste
      or smell)?
    • Have you been in known contact with someone with COVID-19 within the last 14 days?
  • Patients with an appointment at any MaineGeneral facility should call ahead if they answer yes to any screening question.
  • No visitors are allowed at this time. Exceptions may be made.
  • No children under 18 can visit patients.
  • Valet parking is closed at the ACH and TCH.
  • No food for patients can be placed in a refrigerator at a MaineGeneral facility.
  • Pedi Speedy hours at our pediatric practices are suspended.

We appreciate your understanding during these uncertain times. Our goal is to protect you, your loved ones and our staff.

Social Distancing at MaineGeneral Health

The World Health Organization has called COVID-19 a pandemic. MaineGeneral is taking steps to prevent and limit its spread.

Our goal of these and other preventive measures, such as handwashing, staying home when ill and limiting travel outside the state, is to help prevent the passing of highly infectious diseases.

Taking these steps now enables us to be proactive, thoughtful and coordinated.

Until further notice, MaineGeneral Health is taking the following steps:

  • Cancelling all public gatherings, events, support groups and education classes at our facilities and at community locations.
  • Cancelling all student groups, tours and job shadows in our facilities. Students in MaineGeneral-affiliated clinical programs will be able to continue.
  • Eliminating all magazines in our patient waiting rooms.
  • Screening patients for symptoms and travel history.
  • Restricting all visitors from MaineGeneral Rehabilitation and Long Term Care facilities. Exceptions may be made in end-of-life situations.
  • Pedi Speedy walk-in clinics at Kennebec Pediatrics and Winthrop Pediatric & Adolescent Medicine are suspended.
For your health and the health of others, do not arrive unannounced at MaineGeneral Express Care, your primary care office or the Emergency Department.
Please call ahead so our medical staff can prepare for your arrival. In an emergency, dial 911

General information on COVID-19 can be found at https://211maine.org/ and https://www.maine.gov/dhhs/mecdc/infectious-disease/epi/airborne/coronavirus.shtml.

Dropping Off Items for Patients in the Hospital

At this time, to reduce potential COVID-19 spread through unnecessary interactions, we ask families not to drop off day-to-day personal or food items for inpatients at the front desk of the Alfond Center for Health.

The only items we can accept are clothing or other items needed for a patient who is being discharged.