By Shelley Farrington Lincoln News • November 5, 2020
EAST MILLINOCKET – Millinocket Regional Hospital has taken additional measures to improve patient care at its walk-in clinic in East Millinocket with renovations specifically designed for patient safety as the COVID-19 pandemic continues.
MRH-Walk In Care, located on Main St. in East Millinocket, has been serving the area with an outside, temporary COVID-19 testing site. This insured separation of regular patients and those there specifically for testing.
However, that changed on Oct. 19 as Katie Mackin, MRH director of marketing said the upgrades to the facility created a specific testing area in the building.
“With no indication of a pandemic slow down and the weather turning colder, MRH determined that a more permanent solution was essential to patient care and comfort,” Mackin said.
The new COVID testing space is located in a formerly unoccupied room within the Walk-In Care building and was thoughtfully renovated to prioritize COVID protocols and patient safety.
Mackin said the testing space has its own entrance off the vestibule and a separate, designated exit to improve patient safety and help prevent cross-contamination. The testing space is also equipped with a negative pressure system, which means the room is independently vented to the outside to assure a clean exchange of air between each patient.
Cabinetry and cosmetic upgrades will continue to be added in the upcoming weeks.
Patients arriving at MRH-Walk In Care are required to wear masks and a screening process must be completed before entry. Mackin said MRH Walk-In Care is also limiting the number of patients in the building at one time.
“Patients are asked to wait in their vehicles and notify staff by calling (207) 447-4700 when they arrive,” Mackin said. “If the staff is unavailable to answer, please leave a message. The staff will greet you in the parking lot and escort you into the appropriate area of the building based upon your symptoms. Your patience is appreciated as our staff is working diligently to minimize patient exposure to germs.”
Because the new COVID room has specific safety measures in use, MRH is asking that patients who are exhibiting symptoms of COVID or Influenza go to Walk-In Care unless it’s an emergency or the facility is closed.
MRH Chief Executive Officer Dr. Robert Peterson reassured the community that patient safety is always a priority at MRH. He reinforced the importance going to medical appointments and getting necessary treatment if needed and not allowing the fear of contracting COVID at a healthcare facility keep patients away.
“Whether at our Walk-In Care clinic, the hospital, or any of our other healthcare facilities, we are exercising every precaution possible to keep you safe,” Peterson said. “It is vital to the health and well-being of our patients that they can safely seek the care they need and stay up-to-date with care plans.
“Care plans should not be interrupted,” Peterson continued. “When necessary care is delayed or interrupted, it can result in severe health consequences. We hope that the safety measures we have put in place will encourage our patients to obtain the care they need in a safe and timely manner.”
MRH Walk-In Care is open Monday through Friday, from 7am to 7pm.
About Millinocket Regional Hospital
Millinocket Regional Hospital (MRH) is a 25 bed Critical Access Hospital nestled at the base of Baxter State Park that provides vital healthcare services to those who live, work and play in the Katahdin Region. Beyond the friendly staff and award-winning patient care, MRH provides an impressive range of specialty and general services; with a recent expansion resulting in the addition of eight new specialties and a Walk-In Care facility. In 2018, MRH was awarded the Press Ganey ‘Guardian of Excellence Award’ for exceptional patient experience; a nationally-recognized symbol of achievement for hospitals who consistently perform within the top 5%. Providing jobs to approximately 250 people, MRH is the largest employer in the Katahdin Region and a crucial economic driver within its community. For more information, please visit www.mrhme.org or www.facebook.com/MillinocketRegionalHospital