Salem Regional Expands While Fighting COVID-19

SALEM – While playing a crucial role in the fight against COVID-19, Salem Regional Medical Center expanded its presence across Columbiana County with new offices and physicians.

The pandemic work began in March, when its flu and respiratory clinic was opened to improve patient flow in the emergency department and reduce transmission risk. More than 700 patients were seen at the clinic, says Michael Santillo, director of public relations and marketing.

“In-patient care areas were expanded to increase capacity to provide frontline care for the growing number of COVID-19 patients,” he says.

On Dec. 22, Salem Regional received its first shipment of the Moderna vaccine and the next day began to administer them to workers.

Over the course of the pandemic, SRMC also expanded its telehealth services, including the launch of Advanced ICU Care to provide 24/7 intensive care services remotely.

“A new telehealth program provides patients with a secure and easy way to receive care from their health care providers in a live, virtual office visit,” Santillo says. “New visitation guidelines identified the need to connect inpatients with their loved ones and our Virtual Visitor program was launched using iPad technology.”

The first expansion of Salem Regional’s footprint occurred in February with the opening of a primary care office in Damascus, staffed by Dr. Steven Swain, who joined SRMC in January, and certified nurse practitioner Gabrielle Dickerhoof.

In June, Columbiana Family Care Center opened in TownCenter at Firestone Farms, offering walk-in appointments and, in the fall, a flu and respiratory clinic. Three months later, Salem Regional opened an imaging center at TownCenter, providing 3D mammograms for walk-in patients.

The hospital earned several awards in 2020, including the gold seal of approval from The Joint Commission for its comprehensive hip and knee replacement program.