Baylor Scott & White reopens clinics to treat non-COVID patients

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TEMPLE, Texas (KWTX) To help treat non-COVID patients dealing with chronic medical conditions, Baylor Scott & White has reopened its clinics with social distancing guidelines.

When patients enter the clinic, they can expect the same social distancing guidelines seen at other public places. (Courtesy Photo)

Dr. Charles Rismyhr, who works at the Gatesville clinic, says it took a while to organize.

"It wasn't all at once," he said.

"It's been at least a month-and-a-half to make sure these clinics were ready."

So far, the biggest challenge isn't keeping patients at a distance, but getting those who need medical attention to come to the clinics.

"Through the collective anxiety, most people are wondering if they're gonna catch COVID-19 when they come," he said.

"These are the people we want to confidently tell that they can come in to have their labs drawn."

When patients enter the clinic, Rismyhr says there are a few things for patients to expect.

"They're going to ask the questions pertaining to recent symptoms," he said.

"From there, if there are any positive results, they're gonna be screened in a secondary way. For those who don't need a second screening, they'll be sent to the waiting area with a face mask. The chairs in the waiting area have also been redistributed to allow that spacing as well."

Doctors and staff will be monitoring their own symptoms and screen each other before seeing other patients.

As businesses begin to reopen around the state, some are concerned about a second surge of the virus. Rismyhr says, no matter the circumstances, staff and equipment at the clinics are fully prepared.

"At this point, we're well within our capacity to handle any surge and any possibly secondary surge that occurs."