MedWest Haywood Statement

Clyde, N.C. (July 9, 2014) MedWest Haywood has reached another milestone in the process of its proposed affiliation with Duke LifePoint Healthcare.  The MedWest Haywood Board of Trustees has reached an agreement in principle on the terms of the pending acquisition of the hospital by Duke LifePoint Healthcare. 

Under the agreed upon terms, Duke LifePoint will invest $36 million in capital improvements at MedWest Haywood over the next 10 years. Additionally, as part of Duke LifePoint, the hospital will become a local taxpayer, providing an important new source of tax revenue to support the local economy.

Because MedWest Haywood is a public hospital authority, the terms of the pending agreement must now be approved by the Haywood County Board of Commissioners and the local Hospital Authority Board.  These boards are required to hold public hearings prior to their approval of the agreement.  These hearings have been scheduled to take place on July 21 and July 24, respectively. 

The pending acquisition by Duke LifePoint will provide MedWest Haywood with clinical and operational resources to strengthen and enhance healthcare services throughout Haywood County and the surrounding region.

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7/9/14 – Message to employees, medical staff and volunteers

Dear MedWest Haywood employees, medical staff and volunteers,

We are pleased to share an update on our pending partnership with Duke LifePoint Healthcare. Our Board of Trustees has reached an agreement in principle on the terms of the pending acquisition of the hospital by Duke LifePoint Healthcare. 

Under the agreed upon terms, Duke LifePoint will invest $36 million in capital improvements at MedWest Haywood over the next 10 years. Additionally, our hospital will become a local taxpayer, providing an important new source of tax revenue to support our economy.

This agreement is now subject to review and approval by Haywood County Commissioners as well as the local Hospital Authority.  These boards are required to hold public hearings prior to their approval of the agreement.  These hearings have been scheduled to take place on July 21 and July 24, respectively. 

We are excited to move forward with the final steps in completing this acquisition. The due diligence process the last several weeks has reinforced our belief that Duke LifePoint is the right partner for MedWest Haywood. When we become part of Duke LifePoint, we will have new resources to enhance healthcare services throughout our communities and strengthen our hospital for the future.

Thank you for your commitment to MedWest Haywood and our patients. We look forward to the opportunities ahead of us as part of Duke LifePoint. Please contact us or your manager at any time if you have any questions.

Sincerely,

Frank Powers                                                              Janie Sinacore-Jaberg

Chairman                                                                     President and Chief Executive Officer

MedWest Haywood Board of Trustees               MedWest Haywood 


MedWest Haywood Media Update


Afternoon 7/9/14


Tomorrow morning, MedWest Haywood will reopen all inpatient departments in their main hospital. This comes less than three weeks after an electrical fire, contained to the switch room, resulted in the safe relocation of all patients to other facilities. The ER and outpatient departments in the hospital reopened for patient care on June 30, slightly ahead of a projected early July reopening. The Emergency Department will begin receiving all ambulance traffic at 7:00 am Thursday, July 10.

The services that will be reopening include Intensive Care Unit, Progressive Care Unit, Women’s Services, which includes labor and delivery, Behavioral Health Unit, Medical/ Surgical department, and Surgical Services, which includes all operating rooms. This decision comes after successfully completing another review and approval by technical and governmental agencies, including the North Carolina Department of Health Service Regulation (DHSR).

With this action, MedWest Haywood will be fully operational and ready to deliver excellent, safe care once again on every floor of its facility.

“We are incredibly pleased with the pace of this process,” said MedWest Haywood President and CEO Janie Sinacore-Jaberg. “I said all along that we weren’t going to rush it, and we didn’t. We did everything correctly, methodically and in a very organized way. The fact that we are fully reopened for safe patient care less than three weeks after the incident is incredible. This rapid recovery process highlights the expertise and experience of the many crews who worked so hard to help us regain full operations. This is our labor of love, and we have so many organizations, businesses and people to thank for helping us get to where we are. We are planning a big thank you in the very near future.”

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MedWest Haywood Media Update


Afternoon 7/3/14

On Monday, June 30, MedWest Haywood reported that their Emergency Department reopened for patient care, less than two weeks after an electrical fire resulted in relocation of all patients in the main hospital. This was slightly ahead of a projected early July reopening, and comes after successfully completing review and approval by technical and governmental agencies, including the North Carolina Department of Health Service Regulation (DHSR).

The MedWest Haywood Emergency Department is ready to handle the busy 4th of July weekend. Although ambulances are still being rerouted to other facilities, the hospital’s emergency department can accept walk-in emergencies. Updates will be issued to inform the community as to when ambulances are once again travelling to MedWest Haywood’s emergency department. MedWest Haywood encourages anyone who experiences a life-threatening or severe injury to call 911 or go to their nearest emergency room.

Dr. Marvin Williams, an Emergency Room physician at MedWest Haywood, had a few words of advice for the upcoming holiday weekend. “Use caution when handling fireworks; follow the directions, and ensure that you are not near any flammable source when using them,” said Dr. Williams. “This time of year tends to be hot and sunny, so be sure to stay adequately hydrated and take frequent shade breaks.” Williams had one final word of advice for holiday weekend revelers, “Alcohol and fireworks don’t mix. Be alert so that you can protect yourself and others. And of course if you do plan on consuming alcohol, always appoint a designated driver.”

For non-life-threatening injuries and illnesses, MedWest Haywood operates two Urgent Care Centers; one on Hazelwood Ave. in Waynesville and one at exit 31 off I-40 in Canton. The Urgent Care Centers operate seven days a week from 8 am - 6:30 pm.

Carolinas MED-1, the mobile Emergency Department, left the MedWest Haywood campus on Wednesday, July 2. They received a cheerful send-off from many MedWest Haywood team members, who thanked them for their assistance.  

Also reopened in the main hospital were outpatient imaging, outpatient lab, registration, patient financial advocates, and internal support departments such as pharmacy, materials management, environmental services (housekeeping), security, and business offices.

It is expected that inpatient services will be reopened by mid- late July if not sooner. Updates will be issued to keep the community informed about any unexpected shift in timeline as the rapid recovery continues.

Working with its insurance carrier MedWest Haywood has been able to ensure all employees a continuation of benefits and payroll during this recovery time.

As a reminder, all other MedWest Haywood facilities including The Outpatient Care Center, The Health & Fitness Center, all related physician practices, the Home Health and Hospice and Urgent Care Centers, have remained fully operational throughout this incident. Other services still operational include cardiopulmonary rehab, all outpatient rehab services, occupational health, wound care, ambulatory infusion, and others.

“We are very pleased with the progress we have been able to make so far,” said MedWest Haywood president and CEO Janie Sinacore-Jaberg. “Right now, we are ahead of schedule, but aren’t going to rush this; we are still maintaining an organized and methodical process to ensure patient safety. Many thanks to our team and all agencies, organizations and businesses who have assisted us. We hope to have inpatients back in the main hospital very soon.”


MEMO


FROM: Janie Sinacore-Jaberg, FACHE President and CEO, MedWest Haywood
TO: Staff, Medical Staff, Volunteers, Board of Trustees
RE: MedWest Haywood Update

7/2/14

Dear Team,

As you know, our Emergency Department reopened for patient care Monday, less than two weeks after an electrical fire resulted in our decision to relocate all patients in the main hospital. This puts us ahead of our projected schedule for this phase. As a reminder, the opening of our Emergency Department, as well as some other outpatient services in the main hospital including OP Imaging, OP Lab, some Cardiology services, Registration, Patient Financial Services, Pharmacy, Materials Management and other departments such as Environmental Services, Business offices, and Quality/ Risk comes after successfully completing technical and governmental review and approval, including a successful inspection by the North Carolina Department of Health Service Regulation (DHSR).

Carolinas MED-1 (the mobile Emergency Department) remained onsite in a supporting role for a short period of time while the Emergency Department transition was completed. A large group of us met in the front parking lot at 11:30 am to wish them a safe journey home. We are so thankful for the services they provided, and I am proud of our team, who worked alongside the MED-1 crew to save lives here in Haywood County.

We are currently testing our systems in order to begin phase two of the recovery process. This phase is when we bring inpatient services and some outpatient services that have yet to transition back to the main facility. We hope this will be completed within a couple of weeks if not sooner. We will let you know as soon as this happens. We expect to be a bit ahead of our projected schedule for phase two, but timelines can shift based on a number of technical and governmental review factors.

Once we are prepared for phase two (the return of inpatients to our main hospital), we will have another inspection by the Department of Health Service Regulation (DHSR). After successful completion of this inspection and our internal technical review process, we will begin to move back our inpatient services! As soon as we have information about this phase of recovery, we will send it to you.

We will issue updates to keep you informed about any unexpected shift in timeline as our rapid recovery continues.

As a reminder, we worked with our insurance carrier to ensure all employees a continuation of benefits and payroll during this recovery time.

Also, please remember that all of our other facilities including The Outpatient Care Center, The Health & Fitness Center, all related physician practices, Home Health and Hospice and Urgent Care Centers, have remained fully operational throughout this incident. Additionally, services such as Outpatient Rehab, Cardiopulmonary Rehab, Occupational Health, and other outpatient services are still operational. Other outpatient services such as Wound Care and Ambulatory Infusion have also continued, they were simply relocated to other facilities during this incident.

I cannot stress enough how proud I am of the dedication and professionalism displayed by our team. You all kept your focus on safe patient care and it is because of your efforts that our community experienced a continuation of safe, excellent patient care. I remain very pleased with how the recovery process has proceeded and I look forward to when everyone can get back ‘home’ to their usual locations. This is an experience that we didn’t ask for and certainly didn’t want, but one thing I’m sure of is that it has brought all of us closer, and taught us not to take for granted the things we have. Thank you again for everything you have done.

-Janie


MedWest Haywood Media Update


Morning 6/30/14

The Emergency Department at MedWest Haywood reopened for patient care today, less than two weeks after an electrical fire resulted in relocation of all patients in the main hospital. This is slightly ahead of a projected early July reopening, and comes after successfully completing review and approval by technical and governmental agencies, including the North Carolina Department of Health Service Regulation (DHSR).

Carolinas MED-1 will remain onsite in a supporting role for a short period of time while the Emergency Department transition is completed.

MedWest Haywood nears completion of the short-term recovery phase, which also includes opening other departments such as our business offices. It is expected that all inpatient services will be reopened by mid- late July.

Updates will be issued to keep the community informed about any unexpected shift in timeline as the rapid recovery continues.

The MedWest Haywood team is working hard in concert with our electrical engineering firm who is leading the charge and is supported by several local firms, Carolinas HealthCare System and other partners on a very methodical process to get MedWest Haywood up and running as quickly as possible.

Working with its insurance carrier MedWest Haywood has been able to ensure all employees a continuation of benefits and payroll during this recovery time.

As a reminder, all other MedWest Haywood facilities including The Outpatient Care Center, The Health & Fitness Center, all related physician practices, the Home Health and Hospice and Urgent Care Centers, have remained fully operational throughout this incident.

“We can’t thank everyone in the community enough for their support,” said MedWest Haywood president and CEO Janie Sinacore-Jaberg. “We have experienced a wonderful outpouring of concern and many offers of help; it has been very heartwarming. We are very pleased with how the recovery process has proceeded and we look forward to reopening all services in our main hospital very shortly.”

MedWest Haywood Media Update

Morning 6/30/14

Dear Team,

I am pleased to announce that our Emergency Department reopened for patient care today, less than two weeks after an electrical fire resulted in our decision to relocate of all patients in the main hospital. We are slightly ahead of a projected early July reopening, and this comes after successfully completing review and approval by technical and governmental agencies, including the North Carolina Department of Health Service Regulation (DHSR).

Carolinas MED-1 will remain onsite in a supporting role for a short period of time while the Emergency Department transition is completed.

We near completion of the short-term recovery phase, which also includes opening other departments such as our business offices. We expect to reopen all inpatient services by mid- late July.

We will issue updates to keep you informed about any unexpected shift in timeline as our rapid recovery continues.

We are working hard in concert with our electrical engineering firm who is leading the charge and is supported by several local firms, Carolinas HealthCare System and other partners on a very methodical process to get our main hospital up and running as quickly as possible.

Working with our insurance carrier we have been able to ensure all employees a continuation of benefits and payroll during this recovery time.

As a reminder, all of our other facilities including The Outpatient Care Center, The Health & Fitness Center, all related physician practices, the Home Health and Hospice and Urgent Care Centers, have remained fully operational throughout this incident.

I am so proud of the dedication and professionalism displayed by our team. You kept your focus on safe patient care and it is because of your efforts that we were able to accomplish so much in this period of time. Additionally, we have experienced a wonderful outpouring of concern and many offers of help; it has been very heartwarming. I am very very pleased with how the recovery process has proceeded and I look forward to reopening all services in our main hospital very shortly. Thank you again for everything you have done.



TO: All employees of MedWest Haywood, Haywood MPN Providers


FROM: Janie Sinacore-Jaberg, FACHE, President and CEO, MedWest Haywood

RE:  Hospital Update

DATE: 6/26/14


Dear Team,

This is an updated communication as related to our projected plan for payroll processing. This memo will be distributed by email and will also be mailed to our employees.

I want to emphasize to you that we know that we have an incredible staff at MedWest Haywood and that we are thankful you have chosen to be a part of our team. MedWest Haywood is currently working with our insurance carrier and we would like to assure our dedicated employees that there will be no disruption of earnings or benefits due to this unfortunate incident.

I ask that you bear with us as the payroll plan is a work in progress and we will seek to keep you informed. Our Finance team is working diligently to follow guidelines as set by our insurance carrier. Our insurance carrier is assisting us in the calculations we will use to make sure that you are properly paid for time missed during this period when not all departments are operational. We are thankful that MedWest Haywood has this type of insurance.

Please note that we need our employees to be available to work shifts as deemed necessary. The expectation is that employees continue to be available to report to work for any scheduled shifts at any MedWest location. During this time of need you may be called upon to do jobs other than the one you normally do. If an employee who is offered hours to work and the work is declined this will be factored into final calculations of the “supplemental payroll” as described below:

  • Normal payroll based on actual hours worked for the pay period ending Saturday, June 28th, will be paid on Thursday, July 3rd
  • We have worked with ADP and are now able to process the supplemental payroll on Tuesday, July 8th, for a pay date of Friday, July 11th . This is an exciting change from our earlier email communication.
  • The “supplemental payroll” will be earnings that will be direct deposited. The finance department will determine the amount of that check based on the criteria below:
    • Based on difference of actual pay for the hours you worked for the pay period ending June 28th (the paycheck you get on July 3rd) compared to your average pay over the previous 3 pay periods
    • New Hires: If a newly hired employee has not worked for the full 3 pay periods, then the normal scheduled hours will be paid, as we will not have a full comparison period with which to make a calculation
    • PTO Scheduled: if an employee had been previously scheduled to take PTO, then the PTO will be processed as normal. This pertains to all supplemental pay periods in the future.
    • Managers will remove any PTO that was input into your timecard that may have been entered as a result of missing work due to this incident. These hours will be paid as noted above in the supplemental pay period.
    • Reminder: All PTO added due to requested, scheduled time off will be added and will remain on the timecard. All Sick time added to the clock due to illness will remain on the timecard.
    • Supplemental pay periods will continue until no longer necessary. The duration has yet to be determined.
    • Pension deductions will be taken from the supplemental payroll earnings, but other general deductions will not be taken.
    • Paychecks from the supplemental payrolls will go direct deposit.
    • Remember, all employees must report for duty and work all hours that have been requested by the management team. All worked hours will be processed in the normal pay period.
    • We will continue to pay LOA employees as appropriate through the normal payroll processing cycle. If you are on a Leave and using PTO or Sick Bank time that will continue. There will be no disruption to your pay.

If you have any questions about benefits or payroll, please contact:

Name     Kim K  Number 828-452-8925

Name     Tina S Number 828-452-8296

Name     Judy K Number 828-452-8289

Name     Craig M Number 828-452-8286

We just sent a media update to you. It has the latest information about the incident and when we can expect to be back in the main hospital.

We will continue to keep you updated. Thank you for your dedication and patience throughout this incident.

-Janie



MedWest Haywood Media Update
Morning  6/26/14

Since the incident last Thursday evening, there has been a great deal of work going on behind the scenes to not only determine the cause of the electrical failure but also determine what steps will be needed to reopen our hospital to patient care.  We have been working hard to get answers to all of the outstanding questions, including the most important one: When MedWest Haywood will reopen?Our timeline to reopen is still tentative, but we know for sure that reopening our hospital to patient care will happen in a matter of weeks, not months as some rumors would indicate.

There are a number of important steps that must occur before we can re-open, including verifying the safety and dependability of our power systems, assessing our medical equipment and devices, and the inspection of our hospital and systems by the Department of Healthcare Services Review and other agencies. We are pleased with the progress made so far. Based on the information we currently have, we believe we will be able to re-open services located in the main hospital such as the Emergency Department, and administration offices in early July. Carolinas MED-1 will remain onsite in a supporting role while we transition back to the main facility’s Emergency Department.  We hope to reopen our inpatient units mid-month, with our hospital fully, normally operating by late summer.

It is possible that technical and governmental approvals may cause this timeline to shift. We will continue to update the community as we know more.  Our team is working very hard in concert with RDK Engineers, Carolinas HealthCare System and other partners to get MedWest Haywood up and running as quickly as possible.  We can’t thank everyone in the community enough for their support.   

MEMO

TO: All employees of MedWest Haywood
FROM: Janie Sinacore-Jaberg, FACHE, President and CEO, MedWest Haywood
RE: Hospital Update
DATE: 6/24/14

Dear Team,

I want to give you an update on our main hospital operations. I will start with benefits and payroll, because I know it is on everyone’s minds.

We want to emphasize to you that we know what an incredible staff we have at MedWest Haywood. Working with our insurance carrier we are able to assure our dedicated employees that there will be no disruption of earnings or benefits due to this unfortunate incident.

The paycheck you will receive on Thursday, July 3, 2014 will be for all hours worked as well as any PTO for requested time off during the pay period ending Saturday, June 28.

The paycheck you will receive on Friday, July 18, 2014 will include an additional amount, determined by the insurance carrier, based on the difference between gross pay received on July 3, and the average pay over the 3 payroll periods prior to the July 3 paycheck.

If you have any questions about benefits or payroll, please contact:

Name    Kim K Number               828-452-8925
Name    Tina S Number               828-452-8296
Name    Judy K Number               828-452-8289

We just sent a media update to you. It has the latest information about the incident and when we can expect to be back in the main hospital.

 We will continue to keep you updated. Thank you for your dedication and patience throughout this incident.

-Janie


Noon 6/24/14
MedWest Media Update

From Janie Sinacore-Jaberg, FACHE
President & CEO, MedWest Haywood

I want to give you an update on our main hospital operations.  Our response to this incident will continue to move along in several phases, all of which surround what our priorities are at the time, and the results of the previous phase. We are working to resolve all issues as quickly as possible in order to resume normal operations in the main hospital.

The first phase was immediate response. This occurred immediately following our knowledge of the incident. Our only priority was ensuring that the patients in our main hospital facility at the time were safely transferred to other facilities or safely discharged home. Because we wanted to ensure the continuation of emergency services to our community, we brought in Carolinas MED-1. This phase was successfully completed. There were no injuries to patients or staff as a result of the fire, all patients in the main hospital were safely cared for, and we were able to provide walk-in emergency services to our community.

The second phase, in which we are still engaged, is the assessment phase. Many resources were mobilized to assess the situation and work to repair any issues that may be found. There is a plan of action in place for this process. Once it is determined that all electrical systems are functioning properly, we will resume providing healthcare in the main hospital facility, contingent upon inspection by the state Department of Health Services Regulation (DHSR). I wish I could give you all a timeline but it all depends on how long this testing period lasts.

I want to stress, because I don’t think it can be overstated, that all other MedWest Haywood facilities are open for business. This includes our Outpatient Care Center, our Urgent Care Centers in Hazelwood and Canton, our Homestead hospice facility, and our many physician practices. These facilities are staffed and continue to care for our community. Additionally, our Health & Fitness Center remains open regular hours.

The third phase of this process will be short and long-term recovery. Short-term recovery would include restoring healthcare services to the main hospital. As previously stated, this short-term plan is contingent on the determination that everything is functioning properly, and an inspection by DHSR. Long term recovery involves preparing the facility for the return of patients. Again, it’s hard to define a specific timeline because each phase is dependent upon what happens in the previous phase.

Although crews are working quickly to assess and repair any issues that are found with the electrical systems, we are undertaking a very methodical process for this assessment, because safety is our highest priority.

We want to emphasize to the community what an incredible staff we have at MedWest Haywood. Working with our insurance carrier we are able to assure these dedicated employees that there will be no disruption of earnings or benefits due to this unfortunate incident.

In closing, I want to thank our entire community for its support during this very trying time for our hospital. We have experienced an outpouring of support from local agencies, businesses and organizations as well. Besides WestCare Health System, first responders and law enforcement from all over Haywood County, Carolinas HealthCare System, Duke LifePoint Healthcare, and our Boards, we have also received assistance from the Haywood County Health Department, Haywood County, the National Guard 211th Military Police Unit, and a whole host of businesses and organizations. We are planning to formally recognize everyone who has been helping us through this. 

We will continue to keep you updated.

Evening 6/22/14
MedWest Haywood Media Update
From Janie Sinacore-Jaberg, FACHE
President & CEO, MedWest Haywood

We sincerely appreciate the support we have received from everyone, including  WestCare Health System, Mission Hospitals, first responders and law enforcement from all over Haywood County, Carolinas Healthcare System, Duke LifePoint Healthcare, our Boards, and who all responded quickly. We could have not done what we did without their assistance. Clearly the Haywood team and Medical Staff have performed valiantly. The team never lost focus on the most important goal; taking care of our patients.

It is important to note that the issue which resulted in the decision to relocate patients from our main hospital was directly related an equipment failure. As we previously reported, the fire occurred on our second floor power room. We have experts here and they are still assessing the situation to determine the cause and the exact measures that will need to be taken to bring our main hospital back to full operation.

I want our community to know that the only MedWest Haywood facility affected by this incident was the main hospital. The rest of the MedWest Haywood facilities are fully operational. Those facilities include our Outpatient Care Center, our Urgent Care Centers in Hazelwood and Canton, our Homestead hospice facility, and our many physician practices. These facilities are staffed and continue to care for our community. Additionally, our Health & Fitness Center remains open regular hours.

Due to the many crews who are on the scene assessing the situation and performing testing of our system, we have modified parking on our campus slightly. Rest assured that there is ample parking for patients visiting our facilities located on our campus including the Outpatient Care Center, Health & Fitness Center and physician practices.

If you are one of our patients and have something scheduled at one of the facilities I mentioned above, we recommend that you show up for your appointment unless told otherwise by a member of our staff. Likewise, if you are a member of the Health & Fitness Center, we encourage you to continue your normal routine.

We have set up a hotline for MedWest Haywood patients who have any questions. The hotline is set up through the hospital’s main number at 828-456-7311 and is staffed 24-7.

As a reminder, we have Carolinas MED-1 currently serving as our Emergency Department. It is staffed with MedWest Haywood emergency physicians, nurses, techs and other support staff, and is fully-equipped to handle emergency walk-in traffic. Patients who require admission to a hospital will continue to safely be transported to area facilities. Patients who are transferred to our sister hospital, Harris Regional Hospital, will be cared for by our Haywood physicians and hospitalists. I would like to urge our community members with non-emergency concerns to visit one of the MedWest Haywood Urgent Care centers, located in Canton and Hazelwood to reduce wait-times. 

I am confident in the Haywood team that continues to care for our community, as well as those who remain focused on assessing and correcting the mechanical issues in the main facility.  

Thank you to our community for their out pouring of support. Although we don’t have the details or a specific time line for when our main hospital will resume full operations, I want to stress that we WILL reopen.

We will continue to update our community as new information becomes available.

6/21/14 
MedWest Haywood Update
Email from Janie to Staff, Medical Staff and Volunteers

Dear Staff, Medical Staff and Volunteers,

Although this has been an incredibly trying time for our organization, I have never witnessed so much teamwork, compassion and care in my career. Over the last 48 hours, we swiftly put effective measures into place that allowed us to safely and successfully move 62 patients and put into place a continuation of emergency patient care. You all have done an incredible job responding to the needs of our patients and their families and I know that they were taken care of quickly and safely.

Under Dr. Colon’s and Dr. Peterson’s leadership, our medical staff responded to be with  us all night and into the next day. I would like to commend   Dr. Dave Thomas, COS and Dr. Colon on their collaboration for a smooth and safe transition for our patients that required transfer to Harris. I want you to know that our Medical Staff is continuing to care for our patients at our Harris Campus.  Our Board members, first responders and law enforcement from all over Haywood County, Carolinas Healthcare and Duke LifePoint all responded quickly and we could have not done what we did without their assistance.  

We are so thankful for our teammates on our sister campus for their dedication and support. The assistance that was offered and continues to be offered, to allow us to take care of our patients is overwhelming.  The medical staff, clinical staff and administration of WestCare were up through the night along with us to ensure we had the support and provide the needed care for our patients.  A very special thank you to our WestCare family.

We owe a debt of gratitude to Carolinas Healthcare System for their speedy deployment of Carolinas MED 1 team (the mobile ED) that enabled us to continue to care for our community’s emergency walk-in needs. Carolinas also quickly deployed electricians, engineers, communications, and senior leadership of which many still remain on site.

Duke LifePoint remains supportive and responsive to our needs.  They responded quickly with no hesitation to offer whatever support  they could provide and remain significantly engaged.

We continue to be in close communication with EMS, Law Enforcement and the County to coordinate the care for our community. They remain actively involved in our Incident Command and daily operations.

This is a situation you can never fully prepare for, but our internal and external protocols ensured  the safety of both patients and staff. And at the end of the day, that is our top priority.  Words can never express my sincerest respect for your professionalism, dedication and patience.  I am truly honored to be a part of this team.  Although we don’t have the details or a specific time line, and there is yet much work to be done, I am convinced with the support we continue to receive we will be able to move forward.  Hang in there!!

We will continue to update you as information becomes available.

As Always,
Janie


6/20/14 
MedWest Haywood Update
  • We remain injury free, and there is no imminent danger to patients or staff due to this incident.
  • We are in the process of transitioning our Emergency Department to a mobile emergency unit, located in the parking lot of our Emergency Department entrance.
  • Ambulance traffic is still being relocated to other facilities, as we are not admitting patients at this time.
  • The mobile unit will be staffed entirely by MedWest Haywood Emergency physicians, nurses, techs and other support staff.
  • The unit, Carolinas MED 1, is a complete mobile Emergency Department. Its capabilities include 13 beds, 4 of which are ICU level, X-ray, Ultrasound, Portable Lab, and others.
  • The unit will be fully capable of stabilizing patients and if medically necessary, preparing them for transport to other facilities.
  • We do not have a timeline on when the facility’s Emergency Department will be operational.
  • We do not have an update on when the hospital will be brought back to full operations.
  • We will send out another update when there is something to report.
6/19/14 Late Evening
MedWest Haywood Update
  • There have still been no injuries and there is no imminent danger to patients or staff due to this incident.
  • Due to the fact that some of our air handling units have malfunctioned, leaving us with reduced cooling ability, we are relocating all patients to other facilities under an abundance of caution.
  • Our Emergency Department will remain open for walk- in patients. ER patients will be treated in the Emergency Department. Those who require admission will be relocated to other facilities.
  • Additional medical staff are arriving at the hospital to help with decisions involving the discharge and relocation of patients.
  • Emergency measures are being taken to repair damaged equipment. We do not have a timeline for repair.
  • The next update will come at approximately 11:00 pm.

6/20 Early Morning 

  • There have still been no injuries and there is no imminent danger to patients or staff due to this incident.
  • We are still in the process of safely relocating patients to other facilities, and discharging those who are safe to be discharged.
  • The Emergency Room remains open to walk-in patients. ER patients will be treated in the Emergency Department. Those who require admission will be relocated to other facilities.
  • We continue to relocate all ambulance traffic to other locations.
  • Friday morning, we will be bringing in an external generator to run 100% of emergency power. This will enable us continue to repair damaged equipment, allow us to continue operations in our Emergency Department, and get the air conditioning system operational.
  • The next update will come when we have something new to report.

6/19/14 Evening
MedWest Haywood Update

  • At approximately 6:30 pm this evening, smoke was detected on our 1st floor.
  • It was determined that a small fire had broken out in our power room, located on the 2nd floor.
  • First responders were on the scene in less than 5 minutes and as soon as they gained entry into the power room the small fire was immediately extinguished.
  • There were no injuries reported and all patients and staff are safe.
  • Duke Power is on the scene and working with other agencies to assess the cause of the fire.
  • All incoming ambulance traffic will be rerouted to other facilities. We have been in contact with those facilities.
  • We are aware that these types of situations can sometimes happen, and we have internal procedures in place to ensure the safety of our patients, visitors and staff. We are pleased to report that our procedures worked very well for us and no one was injured during this incident.
  • We are grateful for such amazing emergency response to this incident. Agencies responding were Junaluska Fire Dept., Maggie Valley Fire Dept., Canton Fire Dept., North Canton Fire Dept., Clyde Fire Dept., Crabtree- Iron Duff Fire Dept., Haywood County Rescue Squad, Haywood County EMS, Haywood County Emergency Management, Haywood County Fire Marshall, Haywood County Sherriff’s Office. With their incredibly swift and expert response we were able to contain the incident without injury.
  • The next update will come at approximately 9:45 pm.