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March 11 Update

Sentara hospital visitation to be limited

All Sentara hospitals will allow only two visitors when visiting patients in our hospitals, emergency departments, and all other outpatient settings. Visitors are asked not to come if they are sick with coughing, sneezing or fever, or if they have traveled internationally. This policy goes into effect Thursday, March 12, 2020.

Sentara Life Care facilities to limit visitors to two per day

All Sentara Nursing Centers, Rehabilitation Centers and our Assisted Living Village will limit visitors to two per day. Visiting hours will be between 8:00AM and 7:00PM. Visitors will be screened for signs of illness and travel histories before being allowed to enter. This is to ensure the safety of our most vulnerable patients and residents as well as our employees. This policy goes into effect Thursday, March 12, 2020.

Optima Health to waive member co-pays for tele-visits and prescribed testing

Optima Health is handling the COVID-19 testing as preventive care for infectious diseases screening. Optima Health is helping members manage testing and treatment for COVID-19 by:

  • Waiving out-of-pocket member costs associated with COVID-19 diagnostic testing at any in-network lab location for all commercial, Medicaid or Medicare Advantage members.
  • Offering tele-health visits free to members (i.e., no member co-pays or cost-share) for in-network virtual care partners. Tele-Health options include Sentara Video Visits between 7:00AM and 7:00PM and our 24-hour partner organization, MDLIVE.

Sentara is developing in-house COVID-19 testing

Sentara now has access to tests through commercial laboratories and will use these if testing cannot be obtained through state health departments and a doctor thinks screening is advisable.

Additionally, Sentara laboratories expect to be able to conduct COVID-19 testing in-house at regional sites in the next few weeks. We are purchasing the needed equipment and creating a process to make sure testing can be turned around quickly.

Recommended best practices

If you have a respiratory illness that includes a fever, cough, and/or shortness of breath AND you meet travel or exposure criteria for COVID-19:

  1. Call your healthcare provider to determine the safest screening method for you. If you are a Sentara patient, this may include a video visit.
  2. Please consider a virtual visit to determine if you need further screening or testing. Many insurance plans, including Optima Health, will cover the member cost of testing for COVID-19. Options include Sentara Video Visits or MDLIVE.
  3. If you have a respiratory illness that includes a fever, cough, and/or shortness of breath AND you meet travel or exposure criteria for COVID-19, AND you do not have a primary care physician, cannot participate in a virtual visit, or a visit has recommended further screening or testing for COVID-19, visit your local emergency department. Please call in advance so that infection prevention precautions may be taken to protect you, other patients, visitors and employees.

Sentara can confirm that presumptive positive patients sought care at Sentara Leigh Hospital and Sentara Princess Anne Hospital.

Coronavirus Assessment Tool