VA Eastern Kansas Health Care System Increases Precautions and Procedures in Response to COVID-19

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

The VA Eastern Kansas Health Care System, which includes the Dwight D. Eisenhower VA Medical Center, the Colmery-O’Neil VA Medical Center and its eight rural community-based clinics, has implemented increased precautions and procedures to protect veteran patient population, staff, and visitors.

Beginning Monday, VA Eastern Kansas Healthcare System activated Tier-III COVID-19 procedures to include restricted access/entry onto VA medical center campuses and 100 percent (patient and staff) screening.

All non-patient visitors are restricted onto the Topeka and Leavenworth campuses. Exceptions may be made for visitors of patients who are in critical condition or in end-of-life situations on a case-by-case basis. For necessary outpatient and non-elective surgery patients, there is a one-person companion limit (no children). If the accompanying individual shows flu-like symptoms, they will not be allowed onto the campus.

Veterans enrolled for VA care who have symptoms of COVID-19, flu or colds (fever, cough, and shortness of breath) are asked to call VA Eastern Kansas and select the option to speak to a nurse before visiting a facility. Tell them about symptoms and any recent travel.

Those coming in for an absolutely necessary health care visit, call (785) 350-3111, extension 54555 before the visit or send a secure message through My HealtheVet Secure Messaging—even if they have an appointment. Patients may be able to get diagnosed and receive care through VA telehealth without having to leave home.

For those who have an appointment but perhaps feel well enough to delay the appointment and reschedule, the VA asks them to call their team to do so. If an individual must visit, plan to arrive at least 20 minutes in advance of appointment to allow additional time for the screening process and expect to answer simple screening questions.