MISSOURI VALLEY, Iowa. (KMTV) — Rural hospital CHI Health Missouri Valley is practicing innovation by taking an old storage room and turning it into an infusion lab for patients with COVID-19.
Prior to the completion of the room, Supervisor for Outpatient Nursing Amy Doiel says it was a challenge for the hospital to keep up with administering monoclonal antibody infusions that fight the virus.
"It was a lot smaller, we were not able to accommodate as many patients at one given time," Doiel said. "Nursing staff was pretty cramped in there with extra equipment and supplies — we needed our own space where we could give the patients a little more room, give the staff a little more room."
So they found a solution without exacerbating their resources: within a week they renovated the room, which cost only $1,200.00 and they did it without additional staffing.
"So we could do four procedures three times a day, with that for example, we had a nursing home that had kind of a breakout, and we needed to make sure they were given attention, and so usually we had to spread them out, or they'd have to wait a day or two. Because of this room, they were all able to come in here and get what they needed to in a quick amount of time," CHI Health Missouri Valley President David Jones said.
Jones believes this is a breakthrough for rural medicine. Even patients from bigger metro areas are traveling to get care with them.
"There's hospitals in the metro that do not have a room dedicated like this," Jones said.
"When you are sick, you don't want to go anywhere, so I think it's great for the people in our community to just drive a few minutes versus an hour to be able to receive this treatment to benefit their care," Doiel said
"Everybody's scared of COVID, they know that getting this drug gives them a very good chance of recovering quicker and staying out of the hospital," Doiel said.
So far, CHI Health has administered 186 infusions across Nebraska and Iowa. If you have tested positive for COVID, speak with your primary care provider on whether or not an infusion is for you.