6 ways hospitals, clinics can help patients feel safe when seeking care

Most patients said that knowing a healthcare facility was following proper infection control protocols would help them feel safe when seeking care, a survey conducted by Vanderbilt University Medical Center shows.

The Nashville, Tenn.-based medical center surveyed 1,331 members of its patients in early May. They published the survey findings in NEJM Catalyst.

More than half (55 percent) of survey respondents said they were delaying routine healthcare during the COVID-19 pandemic. About 48 percent said that the primary reason for delaying care was anxiety about getting infected with the new coronavirus.

Here are six safety precautions that respondents said would make them feel most safe should they require care at a hospital or outpatient clinic:

● Follow proper infection control protocols: 75 percent
● Have waiting room precautions in place: 74 percent
● Screen clinic providers and staff for symptoms of COVID-19: 68 percent
● Offer patients face masks: 64 percent
● Screen other patients and visitors for symptoms of COVID-19: 61 percent
● Screen me for symptoms of COVID-19: 47 percent

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