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Weekly Progress Notes March 18

March 18, 2020

Coronavirus Preparedness: Visit the Hospital Epidemiology and Infection Control website for updates.


COVID-19 Updates

COVID-19 Updates

Johns Hopkins Health System (JHHS), including Suburban, continues to collaborate closely with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as well as state departments of health and other local government agencies, on protocols to help ensure the well-being of our physicians, staff, patients, visitors and communities. These protocols guide our visitor and screening processes, operating procedures and safety practices.

Visitor and Vendor Restrictions

In accordance with the directive of Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, the following procedures are now in place for all visitors and vendors:

  • Visitors will be screened at both public entrances—the Main Lobby in the North Building and the Emergency Department entrance in the South Building—for possible symptoms of COVID-19
  • All Patients are limited to one visitor at a time
  • No visitors under the age of 18 are permitted
  • All visitors and vendors must check-in and wear badges daily

Staff members MUST wear and display their badge at ALL TIMES and should use the South Entrance to help with the public screening located in the North Entrance. It is vital for you follow these procedures to ensure the safety of our campus and our community during this emergency.

Clinical Decision Unit, Progressive Care Unit and Oncology Unit Changes

The CDU (6400) has been changed to a negative pressure unit. Please notify your teams, as anyone entering the CDU will need to wear a surgical mask in common areas (hallways, nurse stations, etc). If staff need to enter a patient room in the CDU, please check with the charge nurse.

Also, in an effort to get as many patients as possible into private rooms, we have made two changes:

  • Oncology patients are now split between 6300 and 2400
  • The two semiprivate rooms in the Progressive Care Unit (3200) are blocked

JHM Travel and Meeting Policy

JHM updated its travel and meeting policy effective Mar. 11 through at least Apr. 12 to ensure the safety and well-being of our patients, staff and visitors. Please review the recent COVID-19 memo and JHM policy regarding travel and meeting restrictions.

JHM will reevaluate the guidelines regularly, and they may be modified or extended beyond Apr. 12 depending on further developments.

Donning/Doffing of PPE Videos

If you have questions about the proper way to don and doff PPE, please watch these videos for assistance.

Additional Updates and Resources

COVID-19 Updates

North Building Update

As of Mar. 12, anyone entering restricted areas of the North Building must wear scrubs, booties and hats; construction vests are no longer required. In preparation for the ORs and Cath Labs moving to the first floor of the North Building, the area is being terminally cleaned and supplies are being stocked. Effective Mar. 14 until further notice, absolutely no staff are permitted in the restricted areas of the first floor. Please avoid wandering on your own into to this area.

The OR and Cath Labs schedule move is as follows:

  • March 16: last day for elective cases in South Building
  • March 17-20: Urgent and Emergent cases in North Building
  • March 23-27: Operating at 50% in North Building
  • March 30: Resuming 100% capacity in North Building

 Assignments for North Building lockers are currently being handed out by Michelle Christ. if you have not received one, please stop by Michelle's office or email her at You may begin moving your lock and personal belongings to the new locker rooms on Mar. 18. The scrub machines will be relocating to the North Building on Mar. 18 at 9:00 a.m. You will have between Mar. 18 – 30 to clean out your old locker in the South Building. Items left in South Building lockers after Mar. 30 will be thrown out.


U.S. News

U.S. News & World Report Reputation Survey

The annual U.S. News & World Report Best Hospitals reputation survey is now open. Your participation in this survey is important, and it is an opportunity for you and your department to be recognized for all that you do. The U.S. News ranking also can impact a patient’s decision on where to go for care and may influence where referring providers send their patients.

Board-certified physicians in the 16 adult ranked specialty areas who claimed their Doximity profile before Nov. 15, 2019 are eligible to take the adult survey. The survey will close on Friday, Mar. 20.

  • To vote, log in to or open the Doximity app, which can be downloaded at iTunes or Google Play.
  • Once you are logged in, click on the large U.S. News call-out icon/graphic on the homepage.
  • You can nominate up to five hospitals in your specific adult field that you consider best for patients with serious or difficult conditions irrespective of expense or location. Only one nomination is required.
  • The order in which you list the hospitals does not affect the ranking.
  • If you have any problems with voting, email for assistance.


U.S. News

Suburban Medical Staff Annual Meeting and Sara and Samuel J. Lessans Healthcare Symposium Cancelled

The 2020 Suburban Hospital Medical Staff Annual Meeting scheduled for Thursday, April 2 and the 10th Annual Sara and Samuel J. Lessans Healthcare Symposium scheduled for Friday, May 8 are bothcancelled due to the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak and restrictions on public gatherings.

The Health of Care

Medical Staff Leadership Retreat On Hold

The 8th Annual JHM Medical Staff Leadership Retreat scheduled for Friday, May 1 has been placed on hold. Updates on the future status of this event will be provided in upcoming issues of ProgressNotes.

The Health of Care

Please Use Concourse to Access the South Building

When entering the hospital through the main lobby in the North Building, please follow the inlaid espresso colored flooring (pictured) and use the concourse to access the South Building. Staff should not walk through the dining area or café as a shortcut to access the South Building. This will help minimize disruption to other staff and visitors enjoying their meals. In addition, you will have the opportunity to enjoy the light-filled concourse while getting in a few extra steps towards your daily steps goal!

The Health of Care

Elevator A: For Visitors and Patent Discharge Only

Elevator A in the South Building is for use by visitors only or for patient discharge.

If you need to access the 3rd or 4th floors of the North Building, please use the staff-only elevator that is accessible through the stairwell located next to Elevator A. This elevator is badge-access and available to staff, volunteers and physicians. Or, get your steps in by using the light-filled Wellness Stairs!

Thank you for your cooperation in ensuring that Elevator A is dedicated to serving our visitors and discharging patients.


CyraCom Interpreter App Available on the Company Portal

The CyraCom Interpreter App is now available for download on the company portal. Visit to begin the download process. Click here for instructions on how to download and install the app. Please reach out to the Help Desk at 301-896-4357 if you require assistance.

Download this FAQ for more information on the JHM Qualified Bilingual Staff (QBS) Program, including how you can become a certified interpreter. For more information on the use of interpretation services at Suburban, click here.


Click here for the March 2020 calendar on



Johns Hopkins Medicine Continuing Medical Education Series 

Mar. 20: Oncology Grand Rounds “Advancing Cancer Survivorship in Primary Care” to be streamed online via Zoom at Text CME Code 24124 to 443-541-5052 up to eight hours after the event.

May 4 – 8: The 65th Annual Philip A. Tumulty Topics in Clinical Medicine. Click here for the course agenda, presentation topics, list of speakers and to register. May 26 – June 10: Summer Institute in Mental Health Research. To register and learn more, click here.


Research Corner

Medical Training for Students with Disabilities

New research shows that the number of students with disabilities who are admitted to U.S. medical schools rose over the last three years, but their funding from the National Institutes of Health is falling. Learn more about this research.

Workplace Safety


Patient Privacy and Confidentiality

Suburban is committed to protecting the privacy and confidentiality of our patients. It is important that you do NOT share or discuss the details of patients, pending testing or general clinical conditions in team stations, hallways, elevators, the dining area or any other public area. This could be a patient in your care or a colleague’s patient. Voices carry, and even a comment shared in passing can be unintentionally overheard by others. Hearsay information can be misunderstood, relayed in social media and communicated to the community.

Maintaining the trust of patients and their family members is essential to our ability to provide the appropriate level of care. We must be mindful at all times of respecting patient privacy.

Please review the JHM HIPAA policies ensuring patient confidentiality.


Epic Upgrade Cancelled

The Epic upgrade scheduled for Thursday, Mar. 19 has been cancelled. Storyboard, Secure Chat and other upgrade enhancements will deploy at a later, yet to be determined date.

Changes to Epic related to the COVID-19 outbreak made to date include the following:

  • An order for COVID-19 (naso-oropharyngeal and BAL). For now, Infection Control approval is required before placing the order, and samples are not to be collected in ambulatory clinics.
  • Automatic infection flags when a COVID-19 test is ordered (“R/O COVID-19”) and when a test is positive (“COVID-19”).
  • Updates to the Travel Screening Best Practice Advisories for nurses and providers, with the addition of new high-risk countries and states and inclusion of orders for Airborne and Contact isolation.
  • Inclusion of COVID-19-related messaging in standard reminder messages sent to patients 7 days prior to appointments.

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