At the Northwest Indiana Breast Care Center at Methodist Hospitals, most patients rely heavily on receiving their results quickly, as this could be a defining factor in a patients’ journey. With COVID-19 working against the center’s usual operations, the dedicated staff members are doing everything in their power to keep things running quickly and safely.
“This is unprecedented territory for most of us, but we are doing everything in our power to provide the best care for our patients,” said Jennifer Sanders, manager of the Center.
All patients who enter the Center are given a mask to wear if they don’t have one already, and all staff members wear masks and gloves at all times. In addition, every patient coming in for any kind of testing anywhere will have their temperature taken and asked COVID - 19 screening questions before they can enter the hospital for services. There is also mandatory COVID testing prior to surgeries and invasive procedures
WIth the Governor’s order suspending elective procedures, the center is only functioning in a diagnostic mode, which means the Breast Care Center is only taking patients who are finding lumps in their breasts or experiencing other red flag symptoms that could translate to a new breast cancer case. The center is also seeing survivors who have a history with battling breast cancer for their annual checkups.
These changes bring uncertainty for many, but Sanders and the rest of the staff at the Breast Care Center want to assure their patients of one thing:
“Although there have been changes due to the virus, what hasn’t changed is our commitment to our patients. We’re still 100 percent there, and we’re doing our absolute best – the compassion, the support, and the dedicated staff is still here for you,” Sanders said.
Now, the center’s staff is glad to have turned its attention to planning a safe and sanitary re-opening.
“We are very pleased that we are going to be able to resume screenings and mammography on May 18. We have three different waiting areas at the center to provide our patients with the recommended social distance along with masks and hand sanitizer,” Sanders said.
“We are focused on wearing what we need to protect ourselves as healthcare providers so that we can properly protect our patients,” Sanders said. “We’re embracing our new normal and are eager to reconnect with our patients in a safe manner.”
Carlisa Primm, registered Sonographer (ARDMS) and Radiologic Technologist & Mammographer RT (R)(M) at Northwest Indiana Breast Care Center offered some words of wisdom:
“I always try to keep a positive attitude no matter what,” Primm said. “I tell my patients, ‘This too shall pass, and everything will be ok.’ I also always take the time to explain our protocol as far as how we keep them safe, such as wiping everything down, wearing masks and gloves, practicing social distancing, and I assure them that the Breast Care Center is working hard to keep them safe.”
For more information and updates, visit https://www.methodisthospitals.org/clinical_services/breast-care-center/ .