(Updated 5/20/2020 at 12:00 pm)

Today’s Stats

Lee Health has:

  • 80 COVID-19 patients isolated in our hospitals
  • Submitted 14,945 specimens for testing
  • Discharged 406 patients
  • 184 employees quarantined; 21 employees exposed at work and positive with COVID-19
  • Click here for graphs showing a running total of specimens collected for testing and positive cases hospitalized.

 

Today’s News

A Message from Dr. Larry Antonucci

During the past six weeks, the number of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 has averaged between 70-80, which shows that we have reached a steady-state in our fight against the virus. At Lee Health, we continue to balance admissions and discharges daily, and, to date, we have discharged 406 patients who have fought the virus and won. We are humbled by their strength and proud to be part of their recovery story.

 

Throughout the past weeks and months, our community has taken the threat of COVID-19 seriously and followed the guidelines to slow the spread—thank you, and please keep it up! With Florida’s full phase one reopening now in effect, phase 2 on the horizon and the upcoming holiday weekend, we will continue watching the numbers closely to see if there is an uptick in cases and hospitalizations. But, with all the steps to return to normal, please do not become complacent in your efforts to keep yourself and others safe.

 

Today marks the 72nd day since we activated the Lee Health Incident Command Center. We’ve said it before, but this is a marathon, and we are still running. I have to applaud the resilience and collegiality of our teams—in the Incident Command Center, behind the scenes and on the frontlines throughout our health system. I could not be more proud to be associated with Lee Health, and it is my honor to lead this organization.

Lee Health is Using Remdesivir to Treat Patients Hospitalized with COVID-19
We are pleased to announce that we are now using the investigational antiviral drug Remdesivir to treat patients with COVID-19. While the benefits of the drug are not fully known, there is evidence that it can help shorten the length of a patient’s illness. Currently, our supply of Remdesivir, which is administered through an IV, is limited to patients in the hospital. There also are specific criteria for use outlined in the U.S. Food & Drug Administration-issued Emergency Use Authorization.

 

Serology Testing Now Available at Lee Health
This week, Lee Health began serology testing for COVID-19, which shows the presence of the virus’ antibodies in a patient’s blood. These tests indicate if the patient, whether symptomatic or asymptomatic, had an immune response to the virus. We do not know, however, how the presence of antibodies impacts a person’s overall immunity. If you are curious whether you have been exposed to the virus, you can request a test from your doctor. The tests can be drawn in physician offices or at our Lee Health Labs.

 

Reopening Pediatric Services
The Lee Physician Group – Pediatrics at Lee Health Coconut Point reopened as of Monday, May 18, and the Golisano Children’s Urgent Care Center on Pine Ridge Road in Naples will reopen Sunday, May 24.

Safety is our top priority, and we are working hard to provide additional layers of protection, such as screenings and protective face coverings, for our patients and staff.

Healthy Life Centers in Cape Coral and Babcock Ranch Now in Phase One of Reopening
Following the governor’s phased reopening plan, we are excited to share that the Healthy Life Centers in Cape Coral and in Babcock Ranch reopened earlier this week.

To ensure the safety of our members and staff, there are several restrictions in place to support state and CDC guidelines. For further information on our safety procedures, restrictions and hours, please review the protocol outlines for the Healthy Life Center in Cape Coral here and Babcock Ranch here.

Due to required physical distancing and reduced capacities, the Fort Myers location will not reopen at this time, but we will announce the reopening date as soon as it is available.

An Update on the Mobile Collection Sites
The specimen collection sites in Cape Coral and Fort Myers near Page Field will be closed on Monday, May 25, in observance of Memorial Day. The Cape Coral site will reopen on Tuesday, May 26, for its final day of operation. Following the closure for the holiday on Monday, the Fort Myers location will reopen on Tuesday and remain open seven days a week. We appreciate the tireless work and countless hours our teams spent mobilizing and staffing these sites, which have been a great benefit to our community.

New Lee Physicians Group Commercial Showcases Telemedicine
Throughout the pandemic, the use of telemedicine has helped patients receive the care they need from the comfort and safety of their own homes. This new 15-second commercial reminds Lee Physician Group patien