What to Know if You're Having a Procedure at Stamford Hospital

Published: June 28, 2021

Michael Ebright, MD, Stamford Health Medical Group and Michael Parry, MD. Director of Infectious Diseases

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At Stamford Health, your safety is our top priority. We continue to take measures to safeguard your health during COVID-19 by following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's guidelines.

Due to the decreasing number of COVID-19 infections nationwide, particularly in Connecticut, and the
steadily increasing rate of vaccinated people, Stamford Health has changed its preoperative COVID-19 testing requirements, as follows:

1. No COVID-19 testing is needed for fully vaccinated patients, but you need proof of vaccination.

We define "fully vaccinated" as patients who are at least two weeks out from their final dose. Proof of vaccination is required.

The following items count as proof of COVID-19 vaccination:

  • An official vaccination card
  • A copy or cell phone image of the vaccination card
  • Medical record documentation of vaccine receipt
  • A doctor's note confirming you are vaccinated

If you cannot provide proof of vaccination or if no other documentation exists, you will need a COVID-19 test 3 days before your procedure. 

Please note: if you have any symptoms of COVID-19 before your procedure, you will need to be tested even if you are vaccinated. 

2. COVID-19 testing may be required for immunocompromised patients before surgery.

This decision is between you and the doctor who will evaluate you before your procedure, and/or between you and your primary care physician. Please speak with your doctor if you have a pre-existing condition.

3. COVID-19 testing remains required for unvaccinated patients. 

If you are not vaccinated, you will need to be tested for COVID-19 3 days before your procedure. Unvaccinated patients who test positive for COVID-19 before an elective procedure should wait at least 7 weeks to reschedule. 

Please note: time-sensitive procedures will be assessed on a case-by-case basis. 

When you have a procedure at Stamford Hospital, you can always expect:

  • Cleaning—All procedural areas are thoroughly cleaned between patient visits. We use specialized UV light disinfection, also known as the robotic Xenex machine, as part of our robust infection prevention program.
  • Screening—Everyone who enters a Stamford Health location is screened for symptoms of COVID-19. Expect to answer a series of questions and have your temperature taken.
  • Social distancing—Stay safe and comfortable in our waiting rooms, where social distancing guidelines are enforced.
  • Face masks—All staff, patients, visitors and caretakers need to wear a mask. If you do not have a mask, we will provide one.
  • Hand hygiene—Use hand sanitizer or wash your hands to help prevent the spread of germs.
  • Family communication—When you arrive, we'll ask for the name and phone number of the person you'd like your care team to communicate with about your procedure. That person will receive updates and discharge instructions.
  • Discharge and pickup after the procedure— Rely on your care team to arrange a curbside pickup time with your loved one when you are ready to go home.
  • Follow-up care—Expect a call 24 hours after your procedure. We'll ask how you're feeling and answer any questions.

Wear a Mask or Face Covering in all Stamford Health Facilities 

Wear a cloth face covering or surgical mask at all times when indoors at our facilities. 

Practice Hand Hygiene

  • Wash your hands frequently, when going out and when handling potentially unclean or frequently touched surfaces (e.g. handling money, opening doors, etc).
  • Use soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol and rub your hands until dry.
  • When traveling, carry hand wipes or a small bottle of alcohol-based sanitizer.

Exercise Respiratory Etiquette

  • Cover your nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing and use your forearm or the inside of your elbow rather than your hands.
  • Wash or sanitize your hands after coughing or sneezing.

If you arrive with a parent, spouse, or other companion, they should also follow the guidance in this letter. If allowed to visit, they will be also screened on arrival, will be required to wear a mask and sanitize their hands, will be restricted to your room, and will be required to abide by all other visitor regulations in effect at the time. If they have any symptoms, or screen positive, or have a fever, they will not be allowed to visit and we may recommend they be tested. This is for your safety and the safety of our staff.

If you have specific questions about the timing and necessity of your procedure, please discuss them with your physician. As always, thank you for entrusting Stamford Health with your care.

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