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Keeping You Safe during COVID-19

Roper St. Francis Healthcare is closely monitoring the outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19). The safety of our patients, teammates and physicians is our number one priority. Our leadership and infection prevention teams are meeting regularly to assess the latest developments, prepare our care teams and review the latest DHEC and CDC guidelines to monitor patient symptoms across all of our facilities. We are preparing for increased levels of admitted patients and are working specifically to prepare for acute COVID-19 patients. We continue to work on increasing supplies, flexing staffing and solidifying workflows to safely navigate our patients to the best venue of care.

In an Emergency


In an emergency situation, every minute matters. Call 911 or visit the ER. Here’s a list of Roper St. Francis Emergency Room locations. Please don't suffer at home during this crisis. We’re keeping ER patients whose symptoms are consistent with COVID-19 separate, isolating them from everyone else and performing intense cleaning to ensure your safety.



Ask a Nurse


Not sure where to go with questions about your health? We’re here for you. The Roper St. Francis Ask a Nurse Line is staffed by experienced nurses and is a free service for the community. Our nurses are available Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. They’ll help you determine if you can manage your care at home and help you decide what to do next. Call (843) 549-4ASK (4275).



Visitor Restrictions


We're taking extra precautions to keep our patients, teammates and community safe. Roper St. Francis Healthcare is joining all area hospitals in implementing a NO VISITOR policy to prevent the spread of respiratory illnesses, including COVID-19, in a collaborative effort to keep our patients and staff safe.

Because of the growing presence of COVID-19 in the community, we have changed our support person guidelines.

For Emergency Services

  • Support person allowed only for minors, vulnerable adults, or for clinical situations deemed appropriate by the charge nurse such as end of life, obstetric emergencies, etc.
  • Staff will update the family contact by phone at regular intervals if the emergency stay is extended beyond an hour.
  • Waiting rooms remain closed.

For Surgical Services

  • No support person to accompany patient. Exceptions are minors or vulnerable adults (i.e. cognitive impairment).
  • Staff will update the support person by phone at regular intervals as they would normally.
  • For patient being discharge from PACU/ACU, discharge instructions with support person will occur over the phone. Exceptions are clinical situations deemed appropriate (i.e. drain education).
  • For overnight or inpatient stays, nursing unit staff will contact the support person regarding discharge instructions/communication as warranted. This may also be done by phone if visual teaching is not required.
  • Waiting rooms closed.

For Inpatients

  • No support person. Exception may only be allowed for vulnerable adults (i.e. cognitive impairment) and family assistance is needed to support the inpatient care. Support person must stay in patient room and wear a mask. They may go to the cafeteria. Overnight stay is discouraged. Support person must leave campus by 6 p.m.
  • Staff will update the family contact by phone at regular intervals at least once per day.
  • For end of life issues, up to two family members will be allowed to be at the bedside. The time frame prior to the actual end of life with be determined on a case by case basis.
  • A support person may go to the patient’s room on the day of discharge to receive instructions and communication if warranted. This may also be done by phone if visual teaching is not required.
  • Waiting rooms remain closed.

For ICU

  • No support person allowed.
  • For end of life issues, up to two family members will be allowed at the bedside. The time frame prior to the actual end of life will be determined on a case by case basis.
  • Waiting rooms remain closed.

For Women's Services

  • One support person will be allowed to be in attendance for delivery and post-partum stay.
  • Support person may go to the cafeteria for meals.
  • One support person may accompany to OB Emergency Room.
  • Waiting rooms remain closed.

For Rehab

  • No support person.
  • Support person may be in attendance on the day of discharge for care instructions.
  • Support person may be allowed under special circumstances around the mid-stay for those requiring extensive training.
  • Waiting rooms remain closed.

Allowing a support person will be a controlled circumstance. We are asking the following guidelines be followed:

  • You will be screened and issued an identification badge at one of our manned entrances (please bring a photo ID).
  • You must wear a mask at all times while in the hospital. A mask will be issued upon arrival if you do not have one already. Please keep this mask for future use.
  • For safety reasons, you must remain in the patient room and access the cafeteria or public restrooms only when necessary. Waiting rooms remain closed.
  • We ask that you leave by no later than 6 p.m. daily. Overnight stays are allowed only under clinically warranted circumstances.
  • If necessary, the designated support person may change at 24-hour intervals. Please notify the nurse when a change is necessary, and they will document this in the medical record.


Guidelines for Patients Visiting Our Doctors' Offices 


It’s an honor to care for our patients, so we are introducing a few new guidelines to keep them and our care team safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Only patients whose physician determines it is clinically necessary will have an in-office visit. All others will be offered a virtual visit.
  • Patients can be accompanied by one support person over the age of 16 only if assistance is required to facilitate the patient’s office visit. The support person is required to wear a mask. Please note for the safety of our pregnant patients, our OB/GYN offices are allowing one support person over the age of 16 to attend the first OB visit and anatomy ultrasound only. 
  • Patients and their support person will be screened at entrance of the office for flu-like symptoms; those with symptoms will be directed to return to their vehicles and conduct a virtual visit. 
  • Support persons will be strongly encouraged to stay in their vehicles during the visit.
  • Patients’ time in the waiting room will be kept to a minimum, and/or patients will be taken directly to their exam room whenever possible.
  • Seating in our waiting rooms has been reduced to maintain social distancing.
  • Our waiting rooms are disinfected throughout the day using recommended CDC and EPA disinfectants and cleaning chemicals (like Sani-Cloth Bleach wipes).
  • Our team is wearing masks, and those delivering care also will wear gloves.


Imaging Services


Imaging services have resumed and to ensure the safety of our patients and teammates, we are implementing these safety measures: 

  • Patients will be contacted prior to their appointment to determine if they are free of COVID-19 symptoms and risk factors.
  • Each room will be sterilized before and after every procedure.
  • All teammates providing patient care will be masked, gowned and gloved.
  • We have implemented an intensive seven-step cleaning protocol and are using the recommended CDC and EPA disinfectants and cleaning chemicals (like Sani-Cloth Bleach wipes) to clean all areas.
  • We are maintaining social distancing. Patients are asked to wait in their vehicle until it’s time for their appointment and when they come in, they are kept a safe distance of six feet or more from others.
  • Per CDC guidelines, patients should wear a mask when leaving their home and in our facilities. Homemade masks and/or scarves will be acceptable.

View a list of imaging and lab sites.



COVID-19 Testing


In order to be tested at a Roper St. Francis Healthcare facility for COVID-19 you must have a physician's order. All patients with COVID-19 testing orders should visit one of our Roper St. Francis Express Care locations to have the test performed.

We are providing drive-thru specimen collecting for patients that need pre-admission testing (PAT) at our Rivers Avenue location. Patients needing PAT are being seen from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and Saturday and Sunday 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Roper St. Francis Physician Partners Primary Care at 5133 Rivers Avenue in North Charleston. Only patients with a PAT testing order can use this service.

South Carolina DHEC is offering mobile and popup testing clinics that provide free testing for anyone. To find a testing site near you visit the SC DHEC website



COVID Diagnostic Testing Fees


Test Description Cash Price
(Net of Self Pay Discount)
Cash Price
(Net of Self + Prompt Pay Discount)
COVID-19 Total Antibody $48.75 $41.25
SARS-COV-2-COVID-19 AMP PRB $104.00 $88.00


FAQs for COVID-19 Test Results


Positive COVID-19 Test
  1. How long do I need to quarantine with a positive result?
    You and any members in your household should quarantine for 14 days from the day you were seen by a physician.

  2. If I don’t have symptoms am I contagious?
    Yes, if you have tested positive you are contagious. Stay quarantined for the 14 days.

  3. Do I need to notify people I have been in contact with? 
    Yes, if you can.

  4. At what point do I need to seek medical care if symptoms get worse.
    If your symptoms become much worse, especially if there is a sudden onset of shortness of breath.

  5. What about my family members in the house?
    Do not leave home. Avoid others in your residence. Disinfect surfaces regularly. Monitor for symptoms that may require hospitalization. Follow CDC guidelines for safety and care.

  6. If other family members have been exposed, should they be tested?
    If they’re not showing symptoms, call your primary care physician and inform them you are positive and seek their recommendations. If they are showing symptoms or feeling ill, they should be seen by a physician.  

  7. My child has sickle cell, what should I do? (This applies to any person having a chronic illness) 
    Call your pediatrician or primary care provider to receive guidance and follow-up care.  

  8. When can I expect to start to feel better?
    Expect to start feeling improvement towards the end of your second week of quarantine or shortly thereafter (or no less than 10 days from symptom onset and 72 hours after fever disappears if you have had a fever).

  9. Do I need to be re-seen after I've finished my quarantine?
    Only if you have developed symptoms you consider urgent or emergent.

  10. What about my animals are they safe.
    Just like with people you should restrict contact with pets and other animals while you are sick.

  11. I'm also a diabetic, what should I expect when taking medications prescribed by my physician. 
    Be aware of your diet and check your blood sugar regularly. Contact your primary care doctor for a diabetic plan of care.

  12. I'm pregnant, does this affect my baby.
    You should follow the advice of your OB/GYN and CDC guidelines for safety and care.

  13. What medications can I take? 
    You can take Tylenol or Motrin for fever and body aches. Be sure to drink plenty of fluids and give yourself time to recover.

  14. When can I go back to work?
    If you have self-quarantined and remained isolated for the duration of 14 days, and are symptom free you can return to work.

Negative COVID-19 Test
  1. If I start to get symptoms do I need to get retested?
    That is up to you. At this point you have tested negative. We suggest that you stay quarantined until you feel better and do not have a fever for three days without taking fever reducing medications.

  2. How do I get a copy of my negative test results for my employer? 
    You can contact Medical Records to have them send you a copy of your results. If you have been seen in our ER, you will be emailed a note saying you are negative and instructions will be provided.

  3. When can I go back to work?
    If you have self-quarantined and remained isolated for the duration of 14 days, and are symptom free you can return to work. 


Elective Surgeries


To improve the availability of beds, Roper St. Francis Healthcare has made the decision to stop performing elective surgeries that require overnight stays and only allow emergent and urgent overnight stay surgical cases. Outpatient and ambulatory surgeries that do not require overnight stays will be allowed as scheduled. Testing will be required for certain non-emergent high-risk procedures. Get more information.



Donation of Critical Supplies


We are accepting donations for critical supplies such as personal protective equipment, faceshields, disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer. Here is a complete list of items we can accept. We will accept any quantity, but these items must be sealed and in their original packaging. If you have questions, please email Covid19Donations@rsfh.com.

If you would like to make a financial contribution to support our caregivers and patients, please give to the Roper St. Francis Foundation COVID-19 Relief and Recovery Fund.



How Should the Public Prepare for COVID-19?


The best prevention against COVID-19 is hygiene. Roper St. Francis Healthcare recommends having plenty of hand sanitizer and soap available. Wash your hands thoroughly for at least 20 seconds after touching objects and surfaces and immediately after interacting or shaking hands with others. If soap and water is not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

Tips to keeping yourself and your family healthy:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Follow the CDC's recommendation for wearing a mask in public. 

Since the coronavirus symptoms are similar to a common respiratory virus, we will continue to educate our patients and the community about prevention, detection and treatment. Please visit the following links from the CDC for important information:



How Does Coronavirus Spread?


Information about how COVID-19 (formerly called 2019-nCoV) is thought to be spreading from ill people to others is available from the CDC.



What are the Symptoms of Coronavirus (COVID-19)?


Symptoms include fever, cough and shortness of breath. Please review the CDC's signs and symptoms of COVID-19 infection page for further information.



Can Coronavirus be Treated? 


Please refer to the CDC's prevention and treatment resources for information.



Is There a Coronavirus Vaccine?


There is no vaccine. The best way to prevent becoming infected is to avoid exposure. Proper hand washing is also essential to control the spread of the disease. Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Soap and water is best, but if it is not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) and You - fact sheet (PDF)



What Causes Coronavirus?


The origins of coronavirus have been traced to Wuhan, China. If you think you may have come into contact with someone with the virus or you have traveled in Wuhan, China and are experiencing respiratory-like symptoms (fever, shortness of breath, or cough), please contact your provider and wear a mask before entering any Roper St. Francis Healthcare facilities.

Please monitor the CDC's Coronavirus page for the most up to date general information about the outbreak. Information and updates specific to Roper St. Francis Healthcare protocols or actions will be posted here as appropriate in the days ahead.
Your COVID-19 Test Results

If you have recently been tested for COVID-19, you can view your test results through the MyHealth Hospital patient portal.


Virtual Visits Available to All Patients

Roper St. Francis Physician Partners is offering virtual visits for all patients whose clinical needs can be met remotely. If you are interested in changing your scheduled appointment to a virtual visit or would like to schedule a virtual visit, please contact your doctor's office.

eHEALTHLINK Newsletter

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