Messages from Carol Gomes, Hospital CEO

Eye on Medicine: Planning Elective Surgery? We’re Up and Running!

Times Beacon Record Newspapers • June 18, 2020

If you were in need of an elective surgery or procedure before COVID-19 and have been delaying it, I want to reassure you that Stony Brook University Hospital is fully operational. We have everything in place to ensure that safe and effective care is provided to every one of our patients to meet their healthcare needs — whether it’s for a simple outpatient procedure or a more complex inpatient surgery. We continue to follow the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and New York State Department of Health (DOH) guidelines and universal precautions to provide the safest environment possible.

You can also rest assured that the enhanced safety measures to protect our patients and hospital staff to prevent coronavirus spread also remain in place. Some of these safeguards include testing all patients prior to surgery, having patients self-isolate prior to surgery, and requiring all staff and patients to wear masks and be screened for symptoms. We also require all hospital personnel to wear the appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE). And of course, we have hand sanitizer stations located throughout our facilities, and patients in the hospital who test positive for COVID-19 are separated in a designated area to minimize risk from other patients.

At Stony Brook University Hospital, we perform, on average, 100 to 120 surgeries daily. This includes a diverse area of specialization, including general surgery, orthopaedics, neurosurgery, surgical oncology, cardiac surgery, trauma, kidney transplants, urological procedures, gynecologic surgery and several other specialties.

From the time you schedule your surgery, to pre-op, and every phase through post-op and beyond, our goal is to ensure your safety every step of the way, while our surgical specialists and their teams provide the quality care you need to restore your health.

Carol A. Gomes, MS, FACHE, CPHQ
Chief Executive Officer, Stony Brook University Hospital


A Message to the Community

Times Beacon Record Newspapers • April 2, 2020

Unprecedented times, unprecedented efforts. As Long Island’s premier academic medical center, we are taking extraordinary measures to prepare as the number of coronavirus cases increases across the region, state and nation:

  • In conjunction with the State of New York, we have opened a drive-through testing site located on Stony Brook University’s South P Lot parking area off Stony Brook Road.
  • We have opened a Field ER at the drive-through site for patients who are referred from Stony Brook University Hospital’s main Emergency Department.
  • We have created a coronavirus telephone triage line for the community: (631) 638-1320.
  • We have converted 150 beds for coronavirus patients, including 47 additional ICU beds.
  • We have canceled elective surgeries and curtailed the number of outpatient care sites, redeploying staff to other areas where they are most needed.
  • We have ramped up our telehealth service to be able to assess patients remotely.
  • Through Stony Brook University, we are creating face shields using 3D printers and manufacturing hand sanitizer. We are also working to create 3D printed parts for ventilators.
  • We are working to create a way to sterilize N95 respirators on-site to allow staff to safely re-use them in order to conserve supplies.
  • We have submitted a surge plan to the state that will increase total bed capacity for our four-hospital system by 100 percent over a 10-week period. This is in addition to the hospital planned on the Stony Brook University campus under the direction of Governor Andrew Cuomo.

Stony Brook Medicine is providing medical and operational leadership for the drive-through service, where more than 4,000 people have already been tested for the coronavirus as of last week. Residents can make appointments by calling 888-364-3065. Hours of operation are seven days a week, 7 am to 7 pm. You must call in advance for an appointment to be tested.

For the Field ER service, patients who believe they may have been exposed to the coronavirus and develop a fever and symptoms, such as cough or difficulty breathing, should call their healthcare provider for medical advice. If they require evaluation by a medical professional or have been advised by their doctor to seek urgent medical care, they should go directly to Stony Brook University Hospital’s Emergency Department.

From 9 am to 11 pm, patients driving to the ED entrance will be greeted and screened while in their vehicles by one of our staff members. All patients will be evaluated by staff to determine the most appropriate care setting. This may include the main Emergency Department or the Field ER at Stony Brook University’s South P Lot. This process is designed to provide a safe and high-quality care experience for all patients seeking treatment.

Unprecedented times require unprecedented measures. Our dedicated physicians, nurses and staff are responding heroically around the clock to care for our community and our patients. We all need to take good care of each other so that we can overcome this global pandemic together.

Carol A. Gomes, MS, FACHE, CPHQ
Chief Executive Officer, Stony Brook University Hospital


A Message to the Community

Times Beacon Record Newspapers • March 19, 2020

The best antidote to fear is facts. As Long Island’s premier academic medical center, Stony Brook Medicine is your trusted resource for reliable information on how you can protect your health during the coronavirus outbreak.

There are many practical measures that you can take immediately to protect the health and safety of you and your family:

  • Wash your hands often, for at least 20 seconds using soap and water or an alcohol-based hand wash with at least 60 percent alcohol.
  • Do not touch your nose, mouth and eyes unless you have washed your hands.
  • Maintain safe social distance (6 feet) from others who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your sneeze or cough with a tissue or by coughing and sneezing into the crook of your arm. Immediately dispose of tissues in trash receptacles and then wash your hands.
  • Clean and frequently disinfect objects and surfaces that are frequently touched.

If you have cold or flu-like symptoms (fever, headache, cough, muscle aches and joint pain), stay home and call your primary care physician for guidance. If you are having trouble breathing, call 911 immediately. Do not visit patients in the hospital if you or a family member believe you may have contracted the coronavirus, are sick, have a fever, cough or any respiratory symptoms.

If you come to Stony Brook University Hospital or one of our outpatient facilities for an appointment, notify our staff upon arrival if you:
(1) have traveled internationally within the past 14 days
(2) have been exposed to someone who has recently traveled internationally
(3) are experiencing fl u-like and respiratory symptoms

To protect your health and the health of your loved ones, as of March 13, we are no longer allowing visitation until further notice. We understand this is a challenging situation and appreciate your understanding. For the latest policy updates, visit stonybrookmedicine.edu.

Until a vaccine and more effective treatments are available for the coronavirus, everyone should take the measures outlined here to protect your health and the health of your loved ones. The facts remain our strongest inoculation to prevent unnecessary fear and concern.

Carol A. Gomes, MS, FACHE, CPHQ
Chief Executive Officer, Stony Brook University Hospital