Big Bear, CA – In a statement released by John Friel, CEO for the Bear Valley Community Healthcare District, Mr. Friel addressed the concerns of our community about the risk of exposure to COVID-19. As of Sunday, March 15th, there had been one confirmed case of coronavirus in San Bernardino County. BVCHD is monitoring the coronavirus outbreak and is working closely with local and state health agencies, other regional hospitals, and the Centers for Disease Control to monitor and implement the most current guidelines. Friel states, “ The safety of our patients, visitors, employees and physicians remains our highest priority. BVCHD has prepared a plan for the screening, isolation, and initial care of patients who seek treatment for the coronavirus and other infectious diseases.” The Hospital will be screening all visitors for recent travel and signs and symptoms of illness. No visitors will be allowed in the Skilled Nursing Facility, Emergency Department and inpatient units. Patients who are concerned that they have symptoms of the coronavirus should contact their primary care provider by telephone to discuss their symptoms. Patients who are experiencing symptoms of coronavirus and experiencing increased shortness of breath or difficulty breathing should come to the Emergency Room. If time permits, please call ahead. At this time BVCHD has a limited supply of coronavirus tests which are limited to patients who are critically ill and meet the guidelines set by the public health department. The best way to prevent infection is to limit your exposure to the virus and use best hygiene practices of hand washing, avoid touching your face, cover your cough and disinfect surfaces frequently. More information is available on the BVCHD website https://bearvalleycommunityhospital.com or bvchd.org, the CDC and the California Department of Public Health webpages.