MetroHealth Announces COVID-19 Testing Capability
Cleveland – The MetroHealth System can now test COVID-19 samples at our laboratory with results available after just two hours, making it the first hospital in the state of Ohio with this technology.
The decision whether or not to test lies with MetroHealth’s Infection Prevention doctors.
“Supplies are very limited, and testing at this time must be reserved for the hospitalized patients who are critically ill and those who have had direct contact with them,” said MetroHealth CEO and President Akram Boutros, MD, FACHE.
“People who have mild to moderate symptoms are encouraged to call MetroHealth’s hotline: 440-59-COVID (440-592-6843),” Dr. Boutros said.
The MetroHealth System is working with its vendors to obtain the supplies needed to expand testing. As capacity expands, MetroHealth will collaborate with the Cuyahoga County Board of Health to make testing more widely available.
MetroHealth has received more than 1,100 calls since opening the COVID hotline Friday. Nearly half of those calls resulted in a telehealth visit with a physician. Approximately 90 percent of patients who spoke with physicians were directed to self-quarantine.
Dr. Boutros reminded people that the best things they can do to prevent the spread of the virus is to wash their hands, avoid touching their face, cover their coughs, practice social distancing and avoiding crowds.
“Wash your hands and be kind,” Dr. Boutros said. “We will get through this together.”
The MetroHealth System, Cuyahoga County’s public health system, is honoring its commitment to create a healthier community by building a new hospital on its main campus in Cleveland. The building and the 25 acres of green space around it are catalyzing the revitalization of MetroHealth’s West Side neighborhood.
MetroHealth broke ground on its new hospital in 2019. The project is being financed with nearly $1 billion the system borrowed on its own credit after dramatically improving its finances. In the past five years, MetroHealth’s operating revenue has increased by 40% and its number of employees by 21%. Today, its staff of 8,000 provides care at MetroHealth’s four hospitals, four emergency departments and more than 20 health centers and 40 additional sites throughout Cuyahoga County. In the past year, MetroHealth has served 300,000 patients at more than 1.4 million visits in its hospitals and health centers, 75% of whom are uninsured or covered by Medicare or Medicaid.
The health system is home to Cuyahoga County’s most experienced Level I Adult Trauma Center, verified since 1992, and Ohio’s only adult and pediatric trauma and burn center.
As an academic medical center, MetroHealth is committed to teaching and research. Each active staff physician holds a faculty appointment at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. Its main campus hospital houses a Cleveland Metropolitan School District high school of science and health.
For more information, visit metrohealth.org.