Audubon County COVID-19 Vaccination Information
Effective Monday, March 8, 2021, the Iowa Department of Public Health authorized COVID-19 vaccine providers in Iowa to officially begin vaccinating additional priority populations. Individuals 64 years of age and younger with medical conditions that are or may be at increased risk of severe illness from COVID-19 are now eligible. Audubon County continues to receive the Moderna vaccine. The Moderna vaccine can only be given to those that are 18 years of age or older.
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), adults of any age with the following conditions are at increased risk of severe illness and are eligible for the COVID-19 vaccination.
- Chronic kidney disease
- COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)
- Down Syndrome
- Heart conditions, such as heart failure, coronary artery disease, or cardiomyopathies
- Immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) from solid organ transplant
- Obesity (body mass index [BMI] of 30 kg/m2 or higher but < 40 kg/m2)
- Sickle cell disease
- Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes mellitus
- Asthma (moderate-to-severe)
- Cerebrovascular disease (affects blood vessels and blood supply to the brain)
- Cystic fibrosis
- Hypertension or high blood pressure
- Immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) from blood or bone marrow transplant, immune deficiencies, HIV, use of corticosteroids, or use of other immune weakening medicines
- Neurologic conditions, such as dementia
- Liver disease
- Pulmonary fibrosis (having damaged or scarred lung tissues)
- Thalassemia (a type of blood disorder)
Audubon County Memorial Hospital and Clinics continues to work closely with Medicap Pharmacy to vaccinate the communities that we serve. Both vaccination sites continue to schedule patients for vaccination in accordance with the supply provided. As of March 10, 2021, 1,994 vaccines have been administered in Audubon County which does not include individuals who have received their vaccine elsewhere.
Audubon County community members and ACMH patients can sign up for the ACMH COVID-19 Vaccination Waiting List either on a computer or through your cellphone by visiting the link below.
People can also sign up by calling 712-563-4611.
According to the Iowa Department of Public Health, because vaccine production has not fully met the demand for vaccine, Iowans will need to remain patient as vaccine production increases. The White House recently announced that by the end of May, there will be enough vaccine for anyone over the age of 16 who chooses to receive one.
The Iowa Department of Public Health is only allocating the new Johnson & Johnson vaccine to specific counties in Iowa. The counties chosen to receive the Johnson & Johnson vaccine have significant populations of front-line essential workers in food, agriculture, distribution, and manufacturing sectors and who live or work in settings that make social distancing unfeasible. At this time, it is unlikely that Audubon County will receive the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
The CDC released new guidance on March 8, 2021 for people who have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19. According to the CDC guidance, fully vaccinated people can safely visit with other fully vaccinated people and some low risk unvaccinated people indoors without wearing masks or social distancing. Someone is considered fully vaccinated two weeks following either a single shot of Johnson & Johnson or two weeks after their second shot of Moderna’s or Pfizer’s two-dose regimens.
Fully vaccinated people do not have to quarantine or get tested for Covid-19 if exposed to someone with the virus as long as they are not showing symptoms, the CDC advises. However, if a vaccinated person begins to display symptoms, they should isolate themselves and get tested for COVID-19.
There are still some activities fully vaccinated people cannot do just yet, the CDC warns. Vaccinated Americans should still avoid medium- and large-sized in-person gatherings, and they should also continue wearing face masks and social distancing when in public. If a vaccinated person is visiting someone who is at risk for severe disease and is unvaccinated, they should still wear a mask, keep a 6-foot distance, and try to visit outdoors when possible, the agency says.
“While the new guidance is a positive step, many more people need to be fully vaccinated before everyone can stop taking most COVID-19 precautions,” the CDC said. “It is important that, until then, everyone continues to adhere to important mitigation measures to protect the large number of people who remain unvaccinated.”
The health and safety of patients and staff is our highest priority for Audubon County Memorial Hospital & Clinics.
The Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) has set up a hotline to answer your questions. Dial 211 from any phone to speak with an expert, or visit www.211iowa.org. IDPH is your best resource to ask questions and stay informed about COVID-19 updates.
We want to emphasize the importance of this community-mindedness by staying vigilant with social practices and hygiene. Stay home if possible and practice social distancing to stop or slow the spread of contagious illnesses, such as COVID-19. Avoid shaking hands, cancel large events, avoid large crowds, and keep a 6-foot distance between you and others.
Audubon County COVID-19 Call Center
For individuals who are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, it’s essential that your entire family self-quarantine. If possible, the individual with symptoms should isolate separately within the home, staying in a separate bedroom and bathroom area. When your entire family is under self-quarantine, no one should leave the home. This is absolutely critical to avoid spreading this highly contagious virus. Make arrangements to have someone drop off needed supplies outside to prevent the disease from spreading to others in the community.
We have set up a screening call center that will be staffed 24/7 by hospital staff. If you feel that you may have COVID-19 or think you need to see your healthcare provider, call our call center at 712-563-5236.
Patients who are mildly ill with Coronavirus are able to recover and manage their symptoms at home. If you have symptoms including a fever of greater than 100.4°, cough, sore throat and/or mild shortness of breath, you don’t need to be seen by a provider immediately. These patients are first asked to self-quarantine their entire family at home. Waiting three days before contacting us ensures medical staff can treat the correct condition and helps to determine if the severity of the symptoms requires medical attention. Contact our call center as listed above if your symptoms worsen or you are having trouble breathing.
Audubon County Memorial Hospital and Clinics is initiating temporary visitor restrictions and guidance for patient visitors to all our care locations effective March 12, 2020 until further notice. As the COVID-19 status continues to rapidly evolve, visitor restrictions are subject to change. These restrictions are similar to those implemented at hospitals across the country to protect the public, and our patients and caregivers, and prevent the spread of illness.
All visitors entering the hospital will be screened for symptoms of the flu and COVID-19. Your temperature will be taken, and you will be asked to apply a mask as you enter the building. Visitors are encouraged to bring the mask each time you come to the hospital or clinics. We do have masks available to wear during your visit, please put mask in receptacle on your way out of the building.
Symptoms may occur alone or in combination, and could include:
- Fever in past 2 days
- Cough in last few days
- Any respiratory issues/difficulty breathing in the last 2 days
We have designated staff at the Emergency Department and Main entrances to guide you through the screening process.
General Patient Visitor Restrictions:
- Hospital (Inpatient) Visitors are restricted to one visitor per day
- All Visitors Must Check in at the Main entrance or Nurses station by Emergency Room
- Only one visitor is permitted to accompany a patient for an ambulatory Outpatient Clinic. Exception: One or both parents/caregiver of pediatric patients.
- Only one visitor is permitted to accompany a patient for outpatient surgery. Exception: One or both parents/caregiver of pediatric patients.
ACMH Fitness Center:
- The ACMH Fitness Center will be closed to the public.
- The ACMH Fitness Center is only open for therapy patients or patients with medical necessity as determined by physical therapy or the Primary Care Provider.
Hospital (Inpatient) Locations:
Only one visitor will be allowed to visit hospitalized patients. One person per day. Visitor must be at least 18 years of age and older.
Visitors are required to wear a mask into the hospital, have it on in the hallways and have the mask on when the patient or a staff member is in the room. Visitors are restricted to one visitor per day. Once the visitor is in the facility, the visitor is required to stay in the patient room. The visitor may personal food items to eat and use the restroom in the patient room. The visitor cannot leave the room or walk in the hallways unless they are leaving. When the visitor leaves the building, they cannot return until the following day. Exceptions to these restrictions must be approved by Hospital Incident Commander (CEO) in specific circumstances including:
- No more than two visitors per patient at end-of-life.
- One or both parents/caregiver of pediatric patients.
- One visitor per patient undergoing urgent/emergency surgery.
- One visitor to accompany patient for hospital discharge.
- One visitor if indicated by patient’s provider to support patient rehabilitation needs.
- One visitor/caretaker for developmentally delayed or severely agitated patients with dementia.
- Visitors under the age of 18 may visit only if they are considered by the patient’s health care team to be essential to the patient’s well-being. Children must be supervised by an adult at all times.
Family, friends and loved ones are encouraged to use electronic devices and applications (apps) to connect with patients (i.e., smartphones, tablets, FaceTime, Skype, etc.)
Exceptions to the Temporary Patient Visitor Restrictions:
- Any visitor who lives in the same household as a COVID-19 positive person is not permitted.
- These individuals will not be approved as exceptions
- Approved visitors will be asked whether they live in the same household as a COVID-19 positive person
This policy is consistent with the 14-day self-quarantine mandate for all individuals who live in the same household as a COVID-19 positive person.
Guidance for Approved Visitors from Exceptions:
- All approved visitors must check in at the main entrance and be screened. After-hours visitors may enter through the Emergency Department door and follow the posted directions on the door.
- All approved visitors will be screened for flu-like symptoms, such as fever, cough or shortness of breath within the past two days and will not be permitted if symptomatic.
- Family members approved for visitation must remain in patient rooms and will not be permitted to wait in lobbies or common areas, including any/all areas of the hospital—lobbies, waiting areas, common spaces, chapel, cafeteria, and/or any other area within the care location.
- All visitors are required to wash hands with soap and water or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer upon entering and exiting the patient’s room.
Additional Visitor Restrictions to COVID-19 Confirmed or Patients Under Investigation (PUI):
- Approved visitors must gown in Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), consistent with personnel
- Approved visitors must not be ill or show symptoms of illness
- Only one visitor is allowed to accompany a patient for an ambulatory visit (i.e., clinic visit). Exception: One or both parents/caregiver of pediatric patients.
- All visitors are required to wear a mask into the hospital, have it on in the hallways and have the mask on when the patient or staff member is in the room. The visitor cannot leave the room or walk in the hallways unless they are leaving. If the visitor leaves the building, they cannot return until the patient is discharged that day or until the following day.
- No visitor is permitted in our cancer infusion locations due to increased risk to immunocompromised patients; visitors may wait in their cars or designated areas per instruction from treatment locations.
Cafeteria is closed to the public and all visitors.
Patient and Visitor Screening
As cases of COVID-19 in the state increase daily, we are limiting the number of public entrances to our hospital. Additionally, patients and visitors entering the hospital will be screened for symptoms of the flu and COVID-19.
Screening questions include:
- Fever or respiratory illness (cough or shortness of breath)?
- Taken a cruise or traveled internationally in the last 14 days?
- Been in a crowd or with a group of people in a small space?
- Live with someone who has symptoms of COVID-19 or has tested positive for COVID-19?
- Provided care for a patient with symptoms of COVID-19 or has tested positive for COVID-19 without using proper PPE?
- Had close contact (within 6 feet for more than 2 minutes) with a person who is visibly sick with respiratory symptoms (i.e., sneezing, coughing) or says they are sick with fever or respiratory symptoms?
How to Stay Up-To-Date on Latest Information
For updates on the COVID-19 and what you can do to protect yourself, your family and your neighbors, please routinely visit the Audubon County Memorial Hospital and Clinics Facebook page, the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) website at www.idph.iowa.gov, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website at www.cdc.gov.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
- CDC Publications in Other Languages
- Implementation of Mitigation Strategies for Communities with Local COVID-19 Transmission
- General Information
- Prevention & Treatment
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Cases in the U.S. (Situation Summary)
Iowa Department of Public Health
- COVID-19 in Iowa — current information, resources, FAQ
- Community Spread Mitigation
- General Information
- COVID-19 Hotline: Call 211
- Self-Isolation Guidance for Iowans
- What is Self-Isolation?
- COVID-19 Fact Sheet for the Public
- Information about Blood Donations and How to Donate
- Travelers Returning from Cruise Ship and River Cruise Voyages
World Health Organization
Precautions – We All Have a Part to Play
Remember to take everyday preventive actions that are always recommended to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses.
- Avoid close contact with sick people.
- While sick, limit contact with others as much as possible.
- Stay home if you are sick.
- Cover your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands; germs spread this way.
- Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that may be contaminated with germs.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol based hand rub with at least 60% alcohol.
Slow the Spread, Wear a Mask
The CDC and Iowa Department of Public Health recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies). CDC also advises the use of simple cloth face coverings to slow the spread of the virus and help people who may have the virus and do not know it from transmitting it to others.
The cloth face coverings recommended are not surgical masks or N-95 respirators. Those are critical supplies that must continue to be reserved for healthcare workers and other medical first responders, as recommended by current CDC guidance.
Audubon County Memorial Hospital & Clinics
515 Pacific Ave.
Audubon, IA 50025