Caring for our Community during COVID-19

Cardinal Innovations Healthcare — March 11, 2020
More cases of the new coronavirus (COVID-19) have been confirmed in North Carolina and a state of emergency has been declared. Our members, providers, and employees remain our top priority.

We are monitoring the situation, following all guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and N.C. Department of Health and Human Services (NC DHHS). We will take quick action as needed.

Read below to find out what we’re doing and what you can do to stop the spread of COVID-19.

What We’re Doing

Your safety is very important to us. Here’s how we’re working to protect you and our team:
  • Access to care. We are opening authorizations where necessary for critical services to make sure our members and their families have the access to care they need during this time. We will update and share guidelines as they are received from DHHS.
  • Crisis and Access line. Our crisis line is available 24/7 to assist if a member is experiencing a behavioral crisis or needs to find a provider. (800-939-5911)
  • Working arrangements. In counties with confirmed cases of COVID-19 (like Durham, Orange, and Wake counties), our employees will be asked to work from home as much as possible and to follow ongoing guidance from NC DHHS regarding member care.
  • In-person meetings. All our employees who live or work in Durham, Orange and Wake counties are encouraged to have meetings over the phone or virtually, if possible. This includes meetings with members and providers.
  • Stay home. We are asking all employees who are sick, or live with someone who is sick, to stay home and find alternative working arrangements.
  • Travel. We have restricted non-essential work-related travel for our employees.

What You Can Do

You can help defend yourself and those around you against COVID-19.
  • Use healthy habits. Wash your hands regularly for 20 seconds. Avoid touching your face and ears. Follow the tips in our printable guide. Avoid touching others, wave “hi” instead!
  • Fight stigma and panic. You are probably seeing a lot of news and social media around COVID-19. It’s ok to feel stressed by it, but it’s important to stay calm and keep using healthy habits.
  • Stay informed. Use credible sources like the CDC and NC DHHS to learn more about the facts and to find recent news.
  • Visiting state-operated facilities. The Division of State Operated Healthcare Facilities (DSOHF) has ceased all non-staff visitors in state operated facilities, unless there is an exceptional circumstance.
  • Avoid large groups of people. When possible, avoid being in large groups or attending public events.
  • Contact your doctor if you feel ill. Influenza or the flu, common colds, and allergies are all possible causes for your symptoms. But it’s important to contact your doctor and let them know how you are feeling and discuss your options.

When You Should See a Doctor vs. When You Shouldn’t

If you’re feeling sick, it’s important to remain calm when looking at your symptoms.

Symptoms* of COVID-19 (coronavirus):
  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath
If you start to experience the above symptoms, you should try to isolate yourself and call your doctor immediately. Remember, don’t panic – these may also be signs of the flu or the common cold.

Symptoms that are NOT a sign of COVID-19 and may be a cold, the flu, or allergies:
  • Sneezing
  • Sore throat
  • Itchy eyes
  • Stuffy or runny nose
 
Call your doctor immediately if you have come in contact with someone known to have COVID-19 or have recently traveled from an area known to have community spread of COVID-19.

Fact-Checked Resources

Learn more from the CDC about how to protect yourself and your community from COVID-19:

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*These symptoms are defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

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