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Steward Health Care System to open nation's first "dedicated care center" to only treat COVID-19 patients

Press releases may be edited for formatting or style | March 17, 2020

While federal and local governments introduce their own efforts to confront this pandemic, Steward Health Care -- which operates 35 hospitals in nine states and serves more than six million patients annually -- is preparing to operationalize a similar model for "Designated Care Centers" in other Steward communities on an as-needed basis, customized to meet the needs of our different regions.

This unprecedented action serves two important purposes. First, by locating COVID-19 patients in a focused environment, Steward can better dedicate the necessary resources, equipment and expertise to provide COVID-19 patients focused care and the very best opportunity for a full recovery. Secondly, this measure keeps Steward's Emergency Rooms and other hospitals in Massachusetts fully operational, allowing us to continue caring for other patients who are sick, who are mid-course in treatments, who are in chronic pain and who need high-quality care. This approach also ensures that non-COVID-19 patients continue to receive necessary treatment of acute conditions.

To this end, Steward will continue our scheduled treatments and procedures, at the discretion of surgeons and physicians in consultation with their patients. During this pandemic, Steward remains committed -- and able -- to meet the essential, ongoing health care needs of its patients. It would be irresponsible to ignore the fact that many other patients will continue to experience heart attacks and strokes, be diagnosed with cancers or blood clots, require joint replacements, endoscopies to diagnose cancer, and cardiac catheterizations, among a host of other life altering maladies. Our responsibility is to determine how to most effectively care for COVID-19 patients while continuing to provide exceptional care to our communities and keep patients healthy and well.

About Steward Health Care System
Steward Health Care is the largest private, tax-paying physician-led health care network in the United States. Headquartered in Dallas, Texas, Steward operates 35 hospitals in the United States and the country of Malta that regularly receive top awards for quality and safety. The company employs approximately 42,000 health care professionals. The Steward network includes multiple urgent care centers and skilled nursing facilities, substantial behavioral health services, over 7,900 beds under management, and approximately 2.2 million full risk covered lives through the company's managed care and health insurance services.

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