Lakeland, FL – Lakeland Regional Health Medical Center is pleased to now offer Call-Ahead Service for those visiting both the Main Emergency Department and the Children’s Emergency Department, beginning Monday, April 20, 2020. In addition to enhancing a patient’s experience in the Emergency Department, this new service offers another layer of safety during pandemics like COVID-19.
Those who have injuries or illnesses that would benefit from an Emergency Department visit can call 863.687.1414 before coming to the Medical Center. During the call, patients are registered, screened, and given an arrival time. Patients will call once they reach the Emergency Department so they can be escorted directly into an assigned room by a Lakeland Regional Health team member. This Call-Ahead Service is also available to those experiencing moderate COVID-19 symptoms so they can receive important instructions in advance of their arrival.
“Coming to the Emergency Department is already a stressful situation for patients,” said Caroline Gay, FHFMA, Lakeland Regional Health Senior Vice President. “We want to provide additional peace of mind and convenience with this Call-Ahead Service, complementing the internationally recognized emergency care offered at our Medical Center. At Lakeland Regional Health, we are committed to providing safe, quick and efficient emergency care to all of the patients we are privileged to serve.”
With this service in place, Lakeland Regional Health officials hope that residents realize that as much as they try to stay healthy during a pandemic, emergency situations such as heart attacks, strokes and aneurysms will naturally arise and need emergency medical attention.
“Over the last month, we began seeing patients who delayed their emergency care for far too long out of fear of contracting COVID-19 at the hospital,” said Timothy J. Regan, MD, President, Lakeland Regional Health Medical Center/Chief Medical Officer, Lakeland Regional Health. “These patients ended up dying when we could have helped them had they come to us sooner. That is just a shame. While the COVID-19 pandemic is certainly an uncertain time, it is important for the community to know that our Emergency Department is safe and ready to care for you.”
The Call-Ahead Service is part of a number of stringent safety measures implemented by Lakeland Regional Health during the COVID-19 pandemic, including significantly limiting the number of visitors, performing temperature checks on all individuals entering the hospital, designating special COVID-19 units in both the Emergency Department and in the hospital, and opening dedicated COVID-19 evaluation and testing centers.
This Call-Ahead Service is optional, and anyone with a medical emergency should seek prompt medical care by calling 9-1-1 or going directly to the nearest emergency room.