(Carthage, Tennessee, July 20, 2020) –  Riverview Regional Medical Center (RRMC) is urging community members to wear face masks that cover the mouth and nose in public areas in an effort to help slow the spread of COVID-19. This recommendation aligns with information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. Surgeon General as being an effective way to prevent the spread of the illness. The hospital has already instituted a universal masking protocol within its facilities and requires anyone entering to wear a face mask at all times.

“We strongly encourage Smith County residents to wear masks because each of us plays an important role in helping to keep our community safe and protect one another from the spread of infectious diseases,” says Patty Anderson, RN, MBA, CPPS, chief nursing officer at RRMC. “One of the easiest and most effective ways we can look out for each other and aid in the fight against COVID-19 is to wear a face mask in public spaces right now.”

Recent studies have shown that universal masking can help prevent the spread of infectious diseases like COVID-19, especially in individuals who may be asymptomatic and unaware that they are ill. Face masks and cloth face coverings should be worn over the nose and mouth, and be held securely in place with loops or ties.

“Until there is a vaccine, wearing a mask in public, practicing social distancing and proper hand hygiene are our best lines of defense in reducing the spread of COVID-19 in our community,” Anderson says. “That’s why we’ve established a universal masking protocol at Riverview Regional to help protect our patients, providers and employees, and we’re encouraging our fellow citizens to do the same in other public places. By looking out for each other, we’ll get through this together and continue making our community healthier.”

For more information from the CDC on face coverings and how to make your own, visit cdc.gov. To learn more about how Riverview Regional Medical Center is working to ensure the safety of patients during this time, visit https://www.myriverviewmedical.com/your-health-our-heroes.

About Riverview Regional Medical Center

Riverview Regional Medical Center (RRMC) is a 35-bed critical access hospital in Carthage, Tennessee.  RRMC provides general medical and surgical care, 24-hour emergency services (including an accredited chest pain center), skilled nursing, psychiatric services, childbirth and geriatric care to residents of Smith and surrounding counties. Riverview Regional Medical Center is a facility of HighPoint Health System. To learn more, call 615-735-1560 or visit MyRiverviewMedical.com.