LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — In the wake of the recent surge in COVID-19 cases due to the omicron variant, VA Southern Nevada Healthcare System reports it is taking steps to ensure the proper allocation of manpower and resources.
The North Las Vegas VA Medical Center will open a COVID evaluation tent on Jan. 10 in order to reduce the recent stress on the emergency department caused by the influx of COVID-related visits, according to officials.
Veterans coming to the VAMC for these issues should first report to the COVID evaluation tent rather than the emergency department. The tent will be in the southeast corner of the VAMC campus, and easily accessible via Shelley Berkley Way. Hours will be 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday to Friday.
Upon arrival, the nursing staff will triage patients based on the severity of symptoms. Due to limited testing resources, visitors who are experiencing only mild symptoms will not be tested, but instructed to quarantine at home, provided with information about signs of serious infection, and asked to follow up after a period of time if symptoms do not improve.
Veterans with serious symptoms of COVID will be screened for further evaluation and admission if necessary. VASNHS will not test individuals who do not have symptoms of COVID-19 at this time.
VASNHS is also changing its visitation policy in order to reduce the risk associated with increased traffic at the VAMC.
Emergency department and inpatient visitors will be allowed in the facility but limited to one visitor per patient. The visitor must stay in the patient’s assigned room during the visit. Visiting Hours for the inpatient units will be from 8 to 10 a.m. and from 4 to 6 p.m.
For outpatient appointments, veterans that require a caregiver may have one adult caregiver accompany them to appointments. Visitation for the LVR3 and inpatient Mental Health is prohibited at this time.
Additionally, to reduce the exposure of patients and staff, VASNHS is offering to transition many face-to-face appointments to virtual care appointments.
VASNHS staff is working to contact scheduled patients to offer virtual appointments.
Veterans who have face-to-face appointments in January at any primary care clinic are encouraged to request their appointment be converted to telehealth or a VA Video Connect by calling 702-791-9024 or with MyHealtheVet.