Frederick rehabilitation center pivots to provide recovery care for COVID-19 patients

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FREDERICK, Md. (WDVM) — The Ballenger Creek Center will begin relieving hospitals inundated with COVID-19 patients as the facility begins admitting patients who are now in recovery.

The center, a rehabilitation and long term care facility in Frederick, is converting to a coronavirus post-acute care center. 

In a statement, Frederick Health Vice President for integrated care delivery, Heather Kirby explains “Ballenger Creek Center immediately engaged in conversations with Frederick Health to creatively think about how we could work together to avoid a situation where we have hospitalized patients who are ready for discharge to a skilled care facility, with no place to go.”

On Monday, the center began admitting COVID-19 positive patients as Frederick County reports about 1,477 cases. About 102 of those cases included hospitalizations.

According to Frederick Health Vice President for Medical Affairs, Kathy Weishaar, even after a patient’s health has significant improved from the virus, they still need ongoing care. 

“For some patients, post-hospital needs are significant and are best accomplished in a skilled nursing facility,” Weishaar stated, “Our providers can be confident that COVID-19 positive patients will continue to receive high-quality care after their hospitalization, resulting in a more rapid return to their regular activities.”

The facility will have a capacity to admit 38 COVID-19-positive patients. The center will be staffed by 190 nurses, physicians, and support staff. 

According to Chief Medical Office, Dr. Richard Feifer, a patient can be discharged to home or a lower level of care after testing negative for COVID-19 twice. 

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