We All Lead With Care
Beginning today we will send out an 11AM and 5PM COVID-19 update to capture the developments as the coronavirus situation quickly unfolds. We are all here for one another to guide each other through unchartered waters. We all lead with care.



From the Governor
This week, Governor Holcomb is continuing to take actions to protect Hoosiers from the global coronavirus outbreak – and we wanted to provide you with the latest updates.
 
Here are actions Governor Holcomb is taking today:
 
  • Indiana will adhere to the CDC’s guidance for large events and gatherings, which recommend no in-person events of more than 50 people.
  • 273 public schools in Indiana are currently closed, using e-learning days, or are on spring break with future closings planned under current state guidelines. The Indiana Department of Education is working with the remaining 16 school corporations on next steps.
  • Indiana’s restaurants, bars and nightclubs will close to in-person guests – with take-out and delivery options available through the end of the month.
  • Hospitals and ambulatory surgical centers should postpone elective and non-urgent surgeries immediately to conserve the resources of our healthcare system. Critical procedures should continue.
  • The state’s Emergency Operations Center has been raised to a Level 1 status and will work in conjunction with the incident command center at the Indiana State Department of Health for planning, coordination, predictive analysis and other functions.
  • State employees should maximize the use of remote work white still maintaining operations. State agencies already are developing remote work plans for employees and will continue to implement them while maintaining necessary state services. Non-essential meetings will be limited to 10 people, while high-risk individuals should not attend meetings in person.
  • State employees over the age of 60 with underlying health conditions should work from home, and agencies should identify work that these individuals can complete remotely.
  • The Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites will be closed, as will the White River State Park visitors center.
  • Indiana’s state parks and recreations centers will remain open, including park inns. Restaurants will convert operations to take-out and delivery.
  • The Department of Workforce Development (DWD) will request flexibility under federal and state law to expand eligibility for Hoosiers claiming benefits and to ease burdens on employers. The DWD will also suspend rules requiring certain unemployment insurance claimants to physically appear at a Work One location to engage in reemployment services for the next four weeks.
  • The Indiana Economic Development Corporation will postpone the inaugural Indiana Global Economic Summit, scheduled for April 26-28.
  • Communities are encouraged to work together to provide child care options for all who need assistance and delivery services of meals and other necessities for senior citizens
  • Hoosiers who can donate blood are encouraged to visit local blood centers. Blood supplies are low. Please follow the guidance at www.redcross.org
ISDH
Below are links for nursing homes to register with the ISDH EMResources. This will allow facilities to update daily their PPE supplies. This will also allow ISDH to better assess and distribute PPE as new supplies come in and to help when they are short. The State wanted to pass along that they understand how difficult this time has been for LTC communities and their employees, and it is appreciative of the healthcare providers in the State.
 

Today's News Feed
2:31 p.m., March 16 from the Indianapolis Business Journal
Indiana loses first patient to COVID-19
An Indiana COVID-19 patient who was treated at Community Health died on Monday, Gov. Eric Holcomb has announced.
“Sadly, we knew it would happen,” Holcomb said. “We anticipate it will again.”
Dr. Ram Yeleti, chief physician executive at Community Health Network, said the individual was over 60 years old and had health issues. But, he said, the individual “would not have died if not for COVID-19.”
He said the individual’s significant other is also infected, and therefore, the two could not be together. Instead, a Community Health nurse stayed in the room with the individual.
“This is the beginning,” Yeleti said. “This is real.”
Indiana has 24 positive COVID-19 tests. However, state officials have acknowledged there are likely many more cases.

11:31 a.m., March 16
Holcomb directs restaurants, bars, nightclubs to close
Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb on Monday morning announced tighter restrictions on everyday life in the state in hopes of stemming the spread of COVID-19, including the closure of bars, restaurants and nightclubs through the end of March..
He also directed hospitals and other health care facilities to cancel elective and non-urgent surgical procedures immediately.  IBJ reported on Sunday night  that three major central Indiana hospital systems already were taking steps to do so.
Holcomb said the state would adhere to the latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to limit mass gatherings to no more than 50 people.
The directive on food and entertainment venues came with the caveat that eateries still could provide takeout and delivery service.
This story will be updated.
11:10 a.m., March 16
State reports 24 virus cases, with 7 in Marion County
The Indiana State Department of Health on Monday said the number of presumptive positive cases for COVID-19 in the state has risen to 24, an increase of five cases from Sunday’s report.
No deaths from the virus have been reported.
The health department’s report includes results from tests performed at ISDH, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and through a private laboratory. Only 139 tests have been administered so far. Health officials say the Indiana has far more coronavirus cases—possibly hundreds more—than those indicated by the limited number of tests.
The department is providing case updates daily at 10 a.m. based on results received through midnight.
Thirteen counties have reported cases, with four experiencing multiple cases: Marion (7), Hendricks (3), Johnson (3) and Howard (2).
Indianapolis-area counties with single cases are Boone and Hamilton.
The first positive case of COVID-19 in the state, reported March 6, involved a Marion County resident who traveled to Boston in late February to attend the BioGen conference.
As of 10:53 a.m. Monday, 3,813 cases had been reported in the United States with 69 deaths, according to a running tally maintained by health researchers at Johns Hopkins University & Medicine.
More than 174,786 cases have been reported globally with 6,705 deaths. John Hopkins said more than 77,650 people have recovered from the virus.
9:15 p.m., March 15
Hospitals cancel, restrict non-urgent surgeries
As the threat of the coronavirus sweeps across Indiana, hospitals are beginning to cancel or restrict elective, non-urgent surgeries to make room for a possible influx of patients.
Ascension St. Vincent announced Sunday evening it will be canceling elective surgeries effective Tuesday at its flagship hospital on West 86th Street—the city’s largest hospital, with more than 1,600 beds.
Community Health Network hospitals also are postponing elective procedures unless the physician, in consultation with the hospital’s medical director, determines the patient will face a “life-threatening or life-altering risk” in the next 30 days.
A spokesman for Franciscan Health Indianapolis said on Sunday it is restricting the number of elective cases, but has not yet banned surgeons altogether from performing them.
Our call centers are critical for ongoing service to members but also may be impacted by increased numbers of employee absences due to illness in employees, their family members, and school closings. However, we are prepared with a number of options to assure that a member’s ability to schedule necessary trips is not significantly impacted. Through deploying supplemental staff to take calls, routing calls among our five call centers, and utilizing our remote work capabilities we will minimize service delays.
 
Members are encouraged to schedule their trips through our easy to use Member Portal . It is a quick and secure way to schedule trips without needing to access a call center.
Likewise, healthcare facilities are encouraged to use the Facility Portal to quickly address scheduling and trip management needs.