- Daily CEO Update
- Help us build extra reserves of PPE — Orange Bag Collection Program begins March 30
- Café changes at Northeast Ohio regional hospitals begin April 1
- Medication Storage Boxes for COVID-19 Confirmed or Suspected Patients
- Last week to access training for Microsoft Teams
- University Hospitals and Cleveland Clinic Offer Prioritized COVID-19 Testing to First Responders
- Need Guidance on Improving Processes? Continuous Improvement Can Help
- Important Update About Reassignments During COVID-19
Daily CEO Update
Today is National Doctors’ Day. We are forever grateful for the skilled, compassionate care that our professional staff members bring to everything they do. This year, we thank them for being part of the heroic team effort to contain COVID-19 and care for patients.
Express your gratitude for doctors and all other Cleveland Clinic caregivers at clevelandclinic.org/kudos. We have received more than 600 inspiring comments to date.
Our hospitals continue to model and prepare for a surge of patients. Internally, we are building out surge capacity within our hospitals, innovating in our use of ventilators and staffing a labor pool. We are working closely with Ohio Governor Mike DeWine’s office on the statewide preparations in Ohio. Our leadership team in Florida is working with Governor Ron DeSantis’s office.
We are focusing our efforts to stock and conserve personal protective equipment (PPE):
- We are taking additional actions to steward the use of PPE. We are launching an internal collection program at main campus and Hillcrest, Fairview and Marymount hospitals to disinfect certain pieces of PPE to stock an emergency reserve. More details will be shared on the intranet.
- You may have heard about new technology to sterilize N95 masks, which was developed by Battelle and approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. We will be collaborating with the State of Ohio and Battelle to use this new technology.
We continue to expand and prioritize screening and testing:
- First responders are at the forefront of the COVID-19 pandemic and it is vital to ensure they have immediate access to testing. Cleveland Clinic and University Hospitals now offer prioritized testing for EMS, fire personnel, police and federal law enforcement in northeast Ohio. That is in addition to priority testing for our caregivers who are also on the frontline of this response.
- We expect our Florida hospitals to access rapid COVID-19 testing as early as this week. These tests allow for results in less than 45 minutes. Because the number of tests will be limited at first, we will be prioritizing for emergency department admissions, inpatients, caregivers and first responders.
- Screening patients helps preserve tests for those who need it. Our online screening tool, which we launched in partnership with Microsoft, has now surpassed 100,000 interactions. Visit clevelandclinic.org/coronavirus and click “Start your screening now.”
I will leave you today with a quote from our kudoboard: “Thank you caregivers for your brave efforts during this time! I see you all as superheroes, and your acts of selflessness will be felt throughout our lifetime as you partake in ending this pandemic. I hope that you find strength together during this whirlwind, and are able to feel how appreciated you are.”
Tom Mihaljevic, MD
CEO and President
Help us build extra reserves of PPE — Orange Bag Collection Program begins March 30
Your continued safety continues to guide our approach to managing COVID-19.
This is an evolving situation, and as we prepare for a potential surge of patients, we continue to take measures to safeguard our supplies of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
Be assured that we currently have adequate supplies, which we will need to continue to use appropriately to protect staff and caregivers at highest risk.
As an added measure to further conserve, we are asking caregivers to help us collect certain items of used PPE, which we will disinfect and store as an emergency reserve stock.
Orange Bag Collection Program
On Monday, March 30, we will begin our Orange Bag Collection Program at the following Ohio locations:
- Main campus: G60, M63 and H50
- Hillcrest Hospital: 3A, 3B, 4B, MICU
- Fairview Hospital: PK Terrace, PK1 and MICU
- Marymount Hospital: 3 West, South, East and MICU
At your PPE donning and doffing station in these units, you will now find two trash bags available — one a clear plastic bag and the other colored orange — for proper PPE disposal.
When you are finished using the product or complete your shift, we ask that you discard the following items listed below in the designated bins:
For the orange bag
Please place these PPE items in an orange plastic bag, this includes both single-use PPE (items worn once and discarded) as well as items worn multiple times throughout one shift:
- PPE worn above the clavicle (face shield, N95 mask and eyewear)
- PPE utilized for multiple donning and doffing events or worn for an extended time such as goggles or face shields.
FFor the clear bag
Please place PPE worn below the clavicle (gown and gloves) into a clear plastic bag.
EVS will be responsible for collection of both the orange and clear trash bags.
Other safety measures
Besides our work around PPE, we have taken a number of recent measures, such as restricting visitor access into our facilities and screening caregivers for fever prior to their shifts, to ensure you continue to work in a safe environment.
Thank you for all you do to serve our patients, each other and our community.
Café changes at Northeast Ohio regional hospitals begin April 1
Starting Wednesday, April 1, the following operational changes will be made at our cafes located in the following Northeast Ohio regional hospitals:
Avon: Café open 7 days a week from 7 a.m.-2 p.m.
Euclid: Café open Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-3 p.m.; weekends from 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m.
- Café open 7 days a week from 6:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m.
- Nook closed until further notice.
- Lower Level Café open 7 days a week from 6:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m.
- Bistro closed until further notice.
Lutheran: Café open Monday-Friday, 7 a.m.-2 p.m.; closed on weekends.
Marymount: Café open 7 days a week from 7 a.m.-2 p.m.
Medina: Café open Monday-Friday, 7 a.m.-2 p.m.
- Bistro open 7 days a week from 7 a.m.-2 p.m.
- Lower Level Café closed until further notice.
These changes will remain until further notice. Cafes and eateries at Akron General, Union and main campus will continue to maintain normal or previously-announced operations. Additional updates will be provided as needed.
Learn more about menus and locations.
Questions? Contact [email protected].
Medication Storage Boxes for COVID-19 Confirmed or Suspected Patients
Effective Fri. March 27, Pharmacy will make available medication storage boxes to be kept at the bedside for use with COVID-19 confirmed or suspected patients in all Ohio locations. Pharmacy is working to distribute in all Florida locations this week. If you are on a unit dedicated to COVID-19 patients, the boxes will be delivered to the unit. For all other units, contact your local inpatient pharmacy department to request a medication storage box. Details about use and disposal are included below.
Box Specific Recommendations:
- During the COVID-19 pandemic, exceptions will be made to the Security of Medications Stored Outside the Pharmacy Policy for COVID-19 confirmed or COVID-19 suspected patients.
Delivery of medications
- Pharmacy will deliver medications to the unit for the patient following standard delivery procedures.
Procurement of storage boxes for patients
- For dedicated COVID-19 units, storage boxes will be placed on designated COVID-19 nursing units near automated dispensing cabinets (ADC) such as Pyxis or Omnicell.
- Outside of dedicated COVID-19 units, for COVID-19 confirmed or COVID-19 suspected patients, nursing will need to request storage boxes to their unit and pharmacy will deliver a supply of boxes to the unit and place near the ADCs.
- If you need a box, please check for a supply of boxes near your ADC.
- If you do not have boxes on your unit or your supply has been depleted, please call your inpatient pharmacy department for more boxes.
Use of storage boxes
- Boxes will be labeled with a patient label by the nurse prior to use.
- Box will be left at bedside with patient’s bulk/multi-dose medication for the duration of the patient’s stay.
Patients that transfer to a new room
- Patients will have their box disposed of in the old room.
- Medications that will be continued are placed in a sealed bag for transport to the new room by the nurse.
- A new box will be used in the new room.
Disposal of boxes
- Empty boxes will be disposed of at discharge in the regular trash in the patient’s room when the room is being turned over.
- If a box is soiled or can no longer be used, the box will be emptied and disposed of in the regular trash in the patient’s room and replaced by the nurse.
- Medications will be moved to the new box.
- For patients that do not have COVID-19 and have a negative test, boxes will be disposed of at the time of the negative test result and bulk medications will follow standard medication management procedures via ADCs.
Recommendations for the Medications:
If a unit dose medication is taken into a COVID-19 confirmed or COVID-19 suspected patient room, and not administered:
- Nursing should waste medication in black pharmaceutical waste bin, even if package is unopened.
- As always, controlled substances require a witness and should follow standard waste procedures outlined in Wasting Controlled Substances in Automated Dispensing Cabinets Standard Operating Procedure
- Medication should not be returned to ADC return bins, stock or Pharmacy for re-dispensing.
- Bulk/multi-dose medications for COVID-19 confirmed or COVID-19 suspected patients should be stored at the patients’ bedside in the medication box and upon discontinuation of medication or patient discharge all medications kept at bedside, whether partially used or unopened, should be discarded in black pharmaceutical waste bins.
For additional questions, please contact your local inpatient pharmacy.
Last week to access training for Microsoft Teams
With the increased number of caregivers working from home, Microsoft Teams is our new, temporary online collaboration tool for scheduling all online meetings. Using Microsoft Teams ensures that our internal network does not get overburdened and disrupt caregiver workflows.
Friday, April 3, is the last day Microsoft representatives will be offering online webinar training. Their overview includes how to schedule meetings using Outlook, share screens, take meeting notes, chat, manage audio settings and more.
Log on to the Microsoft support page to join the training session that works best for you. You’ll also find self-help training, resources and FAQs.
If you have any questions or issues, please contact the ITD Service Desk at 216.444.4357.
University Hospitals and Cleveland Clinic Offer Prioritized COVID-19 Testing to First Responders
Cleveland Clinic and University Hospitals (UH) have begun offering prioritized COVID-19 testing to first responders.
Need Guidance on Improving Processes? Continuous Improvement Can Help
To help our teams develop, standardize and improve general processes and those related to COVID-19, Continuous Improvement (CI) has implemented virtual office hours.
Caregivers may call in to CI’s office hours anytime between 1 and 2 p.m., Monday – Friday. No appointment is necessary.
How to attend
- Sign in to Microsoft Teams
- Call 1.216.452.6212Call: 1.216.452.6212
- Dial the conference ID: 134790370#
Questions? Email [email protected] for more information.
Important Update About Reassignments During COVID-19
This is an unprecedented time in healthcare. We are in a state of emergency in which our duty to patients, each other, and the community has probably never been more pronounced.
Thank you for supporting our mission — and for contributing where you are needed most.
At this time, some of the measures that are needed may not be comfortable, but they are necessary to fulfill our mission and to take care of people who need us most.
Here is what you can expect. It is likely that you will be asked to do something different, which may require training or assignment to another department, work site, shift or remote location.
For example, if you are stationed at main campus, you could be reassigned to report at a regional hospital. A request for reassignment may come from your manager, staffing office or the labor pool. Know that whatever the assignment, you will be supported in these changes with training and resources so that you are able to fulfill the needs of your newly assigned role.
We value and appreciate your contribution. As an organization, be assured that we are committed to our caregivers and in supporting you. We are maintaining pay and benefits for those caregivers whose roles have temporarily suspended knowing that they will answer the call when we need them to return in the service of our patients and one another.