Sarah Bush Lincoln is resuming elective surgeries and procedures on Monday, May 11. Sarah Bush Lincoln suspended nearly 1,000 surgeries and procedures in mid-March.

President and CEO Jerry Esker explained that surgeries and procedures were suspended at the recommendation of the CDC and the Illinois Department of Public Health to help ensure there was ample bed capacity and personal protective equipment in case of a surge of COVID-19 cases. Sarah Bush Lincoln has met the state’s criteria to begin surgical procedures on May 11.

Initially, all surgeries being rescheduled are outpatient surgeries and will occur in the Health Center surgery suites and in the new Surgery Center that opened just prior to the pandemic. Prior to surgery, each person must have a negative COVID-19 test, have an available driver to take them home, and someone at home to help them as needed. SBL nursing staff is calling each person to reschedule surgeries/procedures and schedule a COVID-19 test.

Esker added, “I can assure you that Sarah Bush Lincoln is a safe organization in which to seek care. We follow all CDC and Illinois Department of Public Health recommendations. All exam and procedure rooms and all the equipment in it are cleaned with antibacterial agents. Our staff members continue to self-monitor daily by taking their temperatures, washing and sanitizing their hands often and wearing masks to protect others. We are committed to our community’s and patients’ safety.”

Sarah Bush Lincoln is also establishing drive-thru COVID-19 testing for non-symptomatic essential workers beginning Monday, May 11, in the SBL Center for Health Living parking lot on the east side of the SBL campus.

Those interested in being tested will first call 217-258-7490 to preregister. People with last names beginning with A to M can come anytime from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Mondays and Wednesdays, while people with last names beginning with N to Z can come anytime from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Any preregistered person can come from 8 to 5 p.m. on Fridays.

The staff will begin taking preregistration calls at 1 p.m. on Thursday, May 7, and thereafter 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. There are no out-of-pocket costs for this test.

People coming for testing should arrive from the Loxa Road entrance and exit the same way. Follow the signage. In coming days, SBL hopes to offer similar test sites in other communities.

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