KALISPELL — When something is going on with your health, you want answers fast -- and now at Logan Health in Kalispell, the answers are just a phone call away.
This Salute to Service report shows how dedicated nurses saw a need that developed during a pandemic, and turned it into a full-time service.
“So, way back in March of 2020 when COVID first hit the national media, we started receiving a lot of calls at our hospital with patients and members of the community asking questions. So on a weekend, in the middle of everyone trying to figure out if they were going to shut down the schools, a group of nurse leaders came in and set up a call center to answer all the questions of the community.” - Logan Health Director of Ambulatory Nursing Cody Bartholomew
The Logan Health Nurse Triage line was born in response to the pandemic. In the last two weeks of March of 2020, the phone lines lit up with 2,600 calls with people who had questions about COVID-19.
“They were worried about their family members, maybe their children and their elderly loved ones, especially those high-risk populations," Bartholomew recalled. "We had a lot of calls from those individuals and their loved ones wanting to know what do to.”
It’s not easing up. Last month, the call center received 5,600 calls. It's been so successful, it’s now permanent and here not just for COVID-19 but for all health concerns.
“We’ve been open for more than a year and a half and really transformed this call center. We’re a true nurse triage center so we can answer any questions from the community. It doesn’t have to just be COVID," Bartholomew said.
Acute care and critical care nurses are on the line 12 hours a day seven days a week.
“it’s a different type of nursing. Instead of standing by someone’s bedside and holding their hand or being there for them during a difficult time. We’re there on the phone for them during a difficult time and we can really help calm their fears and answer their questions," Bartholomew concluded.
The Logan Health Nurse Triage line is staffed from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. seven days a week and can be reached at (406) 890-7272