Mercy Still Open for Non-COVID-19 Patients

Press Releasee

JOPLIN, Mo. (April 24, 2020) – With stay-at-home orders and the threat of the COVID-19 pandemic, Mercy emergency rooms (ER) and clinics aren’t nearly as busy as usual. That’s good news as people heed warnings to stay home – but doctors say you should still come in when you need face to face care.

“We completely understand that people might be nervous about coming to an emergency department right now, but we urge patients who are critically ill to come in as they normally would,” said Dr. Jesse Hatfield, medical director of Mercy Joplin’s emergency department. “We have taken steps to limit the possibility of exposure to COVID-19, and there are some conditions patients simply can’t afford to wait to be seen for.”

Non-emergency care needs continue as well, including well-child checkups. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, kids should still have their routine vaccinations.

Mercy Kids’ offices are scheduling patients so there is no mingling of sick and well children. In addition, scheduling has been adjusted so families go straight to an exam room, eliminating the need to sit in a waiting area.

For adults, Mercy Clinic locations are offering video visits to give our patients peace of mind for those worried about visiting a clinic. In many cases, there may not be a need for an in-person visit. Even if there is, for those with chronic or new conditions, Mercy has safeguards in place.

“Mercy has taken a number of steps to make sure our patients can still safely see us to get the care they need,” said Dr. Tracy Godfrey, president of Mercy Clinic Joplin. “We’ve made sure to limit the potential for exposures by restricting visitors to our clinics, screening and masking our co-workers and establishing protocols for patients with COVID-19 symptoms. We’re here to take care of patients and we’re confident we can do so safely.”

Patients should contact their provider’s office to determine whether a visit should be by phone, video or in person. If you don’t have a MyMercy account, you can sign up for one by going to