Sparrow Hospital recommends COVID-19 patients take Uber home

Leaders at Lansing, Mich.-based Sparrow Hospital are recommending COVID-19 patients use ride-sharing services upon discharge if they have no other way to get home, according to the Lansing State Journal.

Larry Crandall, 65, tested positive for COVID-19 March 27. Upon his discharge from Sparrow Hospital, a nurse told him to take an Uber if a family member could not pick him up or did not want to risk exposure to the virus. Mr. Crandall was wearing a mask and on his third day without a fever, but said he still felt uncomfortable taking an Uber. 

"Nobody knows when you become non-contagious for coronavirus," he told the Lansing State Journal. "I'm not supposed to be around anyone who isn't gowned up in [personal protective equipment]." 

Sparrow Hospital suggests patients use Uber or Lyft as a last resort, and it is a practice the hospital has followed since before the pandemic, according to R. Dale Jackson, DO, the hospital's director of emergency medical services and preparedness.

"If you're going to continue operating a Lyft or Uber, you have to assume everyone who gets into your car may be infected," he told the Lansing State Journal, adding that drivers should wear masks and disinfect their cars between rides. "This is going to become commonplace as we start to roll back our stay-home campaign." 

Ingham County (Mich.) Health Officer Linda Vail said that special services from Lansing's public transit system may be a better option to take discharged patients home. 

To view the full report, click here.

More articles on patient flow:

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UPMC planning to ramp up elective surgeries despite state ban


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