Retiree News

Important Message from Kaiser Permanente:

Critical demand across the entire Mid-Atlantic health system – inpatient and outpatient  – will continue to increase, further straining our supplies, equipment, and our people. This calls for us to both provide and conserve Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) necessary for our providers to care for increasing numbers of patients who come to us sicker and needing higher levels of resources. 

Based on anticipated patient demand and the type of care that our patients will need, we will temporarily consolidate medical office buildings starting Monday. Ancillary services will remain open at all medical centers and we will continue to evaluate our members’ needs. 

We recognize these temporary measures will cause some inconveniences, and we thank you for your patience. Given the rapidly changing situation in the Mid-Atlantic region, we need to take a leading position for our communities, and we believe these necessary actions will allow us to provide the best possible care to our patients. We anticipate these changes to be in effect for the next few weeks and will evaluate this plan on a weekly basis. 

What these changes mean for you

The changes mean we will need to continue to remain nimble with the work we are doing and the services we are providing. For example, some of you will be asked to work from a different location, provide care virtually, change the hours you work, etc. Over the next 24 hours, we are working through those details as well as plans to communicate with patients who have appointments in buildings that will be temporarily closed.And we’ve already seen many of you leaning in to help. We can’t thank you all enough for stepping up to face this crisis head on. 

 Below is information about these temporary care delivery changes. Many of you will have additional questions. Your managers, labor leaders, medical center managers, physicians-in-chief, physician site leaders, and department chiefs should have specific information for you in the next day. 

 Our community is so fortunate to have all of you as dedicated champions for the well-being of our members and of each other. We are a leading voice in the fight against COVID-19. And we applaud your work. 

 Respectfully, 

  

 

Kim Horn

Regional President 

Group President, Markets Outside of California 

  

Richard J. McCarthy, MD

Regional Medical Director  

  

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Details of Temporary Changes:

 

Buildings remaining open. The following 15 medical office buildings will remain open for a wide variety of services in our region. Many are open 24/7:

  • In Virginia: Tysons Corner (24/7), Woodbridge (24/7), Reston, Manassas, Fredericksburg, Burke and Falls Church 
  • In Maryland and DC: Capitol Hill (24/7), Largo (24/7), Gaithersburg (24/7) and Kensington, and our physician offices at Holy Cross Hospital 
  • In Baltimore: South Baltimore (24/7), Woodlawn and White Marsh 

Buildings set for temporary closure except for pharmacy, lab, and imaging services. The following medical office buildings will temporarily close for medical care beginning on Monday, April 6. Only pharmacy, lab and imaging services will be open at these sites for the time being:

  • In Virginia: Colonial Forge, Springfield, Alexandria, Ashburn, Haymarket Crossroads, and Fair Oaks
  • In Maryland and DC: Camp Springs, Frederick, Marlow Heights, Northwest, Prince George’s, Silver Spring and Shady Grove
  • In Baltimore: Abingdon, Annapolis, Baltimore Harbor, North Arundel, Towson, Columbia Gateway, Nottingham physical therapy, and the physician offices at Greater Baltimore Medical Center (no pharmacy, lab or imaging)

Urgent care service temporary closures. We are temporarily closing urgent care services at the end of their shift on Friday, April 3, in these locations:

  • In Virginia: Manassas and Fredericksburg 
  • In Maryland: Kensington and Camp Springs
  • In Baltimore: Woodlawn and Baltimore Harbor   

Optical temporary closures. We will also close all our optical departments across the region on Thursday, April 2.

Surge triage assessment areas. Surge Triage Assessment Areas have been set up at South Baltimore, Gaithersburg, Largo, Tysons Corner, Capitol Hill and our Woodbridge Medical Centers. These areas provide space for our clinicians to:  

  • Screen patients and do a quick assessment to get them to the right locations, whether it be home, a testing area, or a physician for further assessment; and      
  • Test our members who have a doctor’s order and an appointment for the COVID-19 test. Members with a doctor’s order will be advised to only go to these sites and no other Kaiser Permanente facility to be tested. Priority will be given to symptomatic members who are also: hospitalized; first responders (emergency medical services, law enforcement officials); health care workers; and medically fragile individuals (including those who are pregnant) and their caregivers.     

Virtual care continues. Kaiser Permanente members throughout the region are being encouraged to access virtual care on kp.org for their health concerns. We ask our members to visit kp.org/getcare to schedule a virtual appointment or to call our advice line at 703-359-7878 for urgent needs that require an in-person appointment. Our staff will contact any members who have appointments at any of our temporarily closed facilities to schedule a virtual appointment or an in-person appointment at a different location. 

Pharmacy services. Our mail order pharmacy delivers prescriptions to our members in less than 7 days and offers same-day delivery for critical medications. On Monday, we started to offer curbside pickup for medications so members can stay in their cars. These services will continue.