If you would have asked us in January 2020 what our vision for the year was, we would have never guessed it would have involved a worldwide pandemic. Somehow we doubt that any of the millions of people affected by the public health crisis caused by COVID-19 saw it coming.
As an employer and a healthcare clinic, we had two main concerns:
Keep our employees safe while they were at work
Keep our patients safe while they were in our clinic utilizing our health services.
10 months into the pandemic, I’m happy to report we have done just that!
When COVID first hit the U.S., Surgical Associates continued on cautiously, with business as usual. As the virus spread, our protocols and our normalcy changed drastically as we began to operate under a new set of rules.
We implemented Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) requirements for staff and patients (including surgical masks and face coverings). We began practicing social distancing but were forced to quit doing surgery on our patients unless it was life-threatening.
We reduced the number of patients that we saw in the clinic on a given day in our efforts to slow the spread of the infectious disease. We then adopted telehealth services (which has been VERY successful). Even with our efforts to minimize the impact, we had to reduce hours for our employees. Some even had to go on temporary unemployment while we navigated the initial volatility of the pandemic.
Surgical Associates was navigating uncharted waters and our protocols were ever-evolving. Like many health departments, we were determined to maintain continuity of care for our patients. Our staff was vulnerable, we had a hard time getting our hands on supplies and PPE and the overall financial impact was quickly worsening.
The effects of the pandemic continue to be challenging but Surgical Associates will forge ahead. We’ll adjust protocols as necessary and we’ll continue to have the safety of our employees and patients as our number one priority.
We encourage our patients to stay safe as we get through this together.