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Central Texas hospitals remain vigilant during global coronavirus threat

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Posted at 5:38 PM, Jan 31, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-31 20:07:10-05

KILLEEN, TX — Emergency response plans lay out key steps when a hospital faces an infectious disease crisis.

The new coronavirus has been deemed a global health emergency by the World Health Organization and the Trump administration. While there are few cases in the United States, hospitals remain vigilant.

“We practice ongoing readiness for emergencies,” said Karen Percell, Executive Director for Quality and Safety of Advent Health Central Texas.

As of right now, with no known cases locally, Advent Health Central Texas is focusing on identifying any potential patients.

“We were able to put public signage. Direct patients that if they had been to China, offer them a screening,” said Percell.

Acting fast and knowing what to look for can help control the situation.

“Having plans in place to have people come together to make rapid plans that make it easy, allow us to own it, and keep our patients safe really quickly,” said Percell.

Hospital employees know the protocols for the emergency response plans. Adapting to the situation is the name of the game.

“Today it’s the coronavirus, another day it might be any other disease or emergency. It is important to rapidly deploy protection to our patients, to keep everyone safe,” said Percell.