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Pre-Op Covid-19 Assessment and Self-Isolation 

While much progress has been made in the containment of the Covid-19 virus, the risk of contagion within the community remains a real and valid threat. The priority at all times for Beacon Hospital is the health and safety of our patients and staff. In-line with National Guidelines from the HSE, some but not all patients must be tested for COVID-19 prior to admission to the hospital.

Patients that require a Covid test include:

  • Those attending for surgery under general anaesthetic
  • Those that are identified in the higher risk categories (eg. patients with weakened immune systems)
  • Those who are Covid symptomatic
  • Those needing admission to the hospital for an overnight stay

Important Covid Testing Information:

Prior to your procedure/surgery, you will be contact by Beacon Hospital’s scheduling department with an appointment to have your Covid Swab Test.

The test is normally scheduled for 2- 5 days before surgical appointments. Later tests can be arranged in exceptional circumstances (emergency admissions, patients travelling long distances, etc.)

The cost of this Covid test is covered by all private health insurance companies.

When attending for your test we request that you wear a face covering. This can be a surgical mask, or a cloth face covering. Our staff will also be wearing the correct PPE including a mask as a health and safety precaution.

Approximately 2-5 days prior to surgery you will be sent a link to complete a short Covid Assessment Questionnaire. This must be completed before attending for your Covid test.

Where do I go to have the test done?

Patients attending Beacon Hospital for a procedure/surgery are recommended to have the test completed in our dedicated screening suite which is located in Beacon Mall, Suite 5A – close to the Consultants Clinic.

Patients are at liberty to have their COVID-19 test carried out outside the hospital, at any accredited centre. However, they must provide evidence of this at least 24 hours in advance of surgery. Failure to provide this evidence will result in postponement or cancellation of your surgery or planned admission.

How is a Covid Swab Test taken:

The clinical staff member will insert a swab (a soft brush on a stick) into the back of your throat and swirl it around for a few seconds. It is not painful but it may trigger a gag reflex. They will then gently insert the swab up your nose. The swab has to go a little way up your nose so that cells and fluids can be collected along the entire nasal passageway.

As the body is not used to having an object in that area, it can create an odd sensation and may bring tears to your eyes if it is done correctly. It won’t hurt, but it can be slightly uncomfortable. Patients are advised to remain still for the duration of the test which will be over in a matter of seconds. Once the test has been completed, you will then be free to go home.

Covid Test Results:

  • Patients will be informed of their test results within 24 hours.
  • If the test is negative, (no evidence of the virus), the patient will be cleared for their procedure to go ahead as planned. If the test is positive, the patient will not be able to go ahead with their procedure as planned. In the event of a positive test result, the consultant will discuss alternative options with the patient.

Prior to Surgery

14 days prior to surgery, patients will need to self-isolate if at all possible. They must follow the HSE guidelines to protect themselves from exposure to the virus such as adhering to social distancing, practising good hand hygiene, limiting interactions with other people and wearing face masks in public places. For more information visit https://www2.hse.ie/conditions/coronavirus/protect-yourself-and-others.html

If self-isolating is possible please follow the HSE guidelines:

  • Do not go to work
  • Do not use public transport
  • Do not have visitors at your home
  • Do not visit others, even if you usually care for them
  • Do not go to the shops or pharmacy unless it’s absolutely necessary- where possible, order your groceries online or have some family or friends drop them off

On the day of your Surgery

When you arrive to the hospital on the day of your procedure/surgery, you will be required to visit the assessment desk at the main entrance. There they will ask to take your temperature and complete the Covid screening questionnaire. If you have already completed this prior to your Covid Test you will not be required to completed it again. In this case, you will be asked to show the text message you received to your phone upon completion of the questionnaire. You will also be asked if you have been adhering to guidelines to protect yourselves from exposure to the virus since having your test.

Keeping You Safe

At Beacon Hospital, we have the highest standards when it comes to the safety and well-being of our patients and staff, particularly during this time as we continue to move out of the Covid-19 pandemic.

In addition to our existing procedures, we have reinforced and introduced a number of enhanced safety measures to ensure that our hospital and facilities continue to be a safe and secure environment for patients and staff.

Our in-house Infection Prevention Control Team led by Prof Philip Murphy, Consultant Medical Microbiologist, follow strict HSE guidelines and have ensured that we have had no hospital acquired transmissions of COVID-19 and Beacon Hospital remains COVID-19 free.

Useful Links:

European Centre for Disease Control latest updates: https://www.ecdc.europa.eu/en/geographical-distribution-2019-ncov-cases

HSE Covid-19 and Travel: https://www2.hse.ie/conditions/coronavirus/travel-and-coronavirus.html

Coronavirus (COVID-19) World Cases Tracker: https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/#countries