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On the frontline: Christy Skauge, RN, BSN

Through expert triage and home care advice, our team prevented thousands of patients from flooding our clinics and emergency rooms and potentially slowed the spread of COVID-19.

In March and April, Gundersen Health System's telephone nurse advisors handled 20,276 phone calls from patients – thousands more than usual.

Some had common illnesses. Many worried they were sickened by COVID-19. Most were afraid.

Before COVID-19 became part of our lives, it was my responsibility to triage symptoms and direct patients to the appropriate level of care. My work has changed in many ways, but my primary responsibility has not.

Our team works diligently to keep up with the constantly changing information to pass on to patients. Before every shift, we're reviewing the latest resources from Gundersen's Incident Command and Infection Control.

Still, one of our most valuable resources is each other. There is so much to learn and teach patients. Through it all, we're supporting one another.

Working remotely meant our team was well-prepared to handle a pandemic because we stayed home and healthy.

With expert advice, we kept thousands of patients at home, where they could treat their symptoms and prevent the spread of viruses. When needed, we directed patients to the best location for care.

We are proud to be part of the COVID-19 frontline. We want to be here for you.

We are available to help because we are in this together.

About the author

Christy Skauge, RN, BSN, is a telephone nurse advisor at Gundersen Health System. She joined the organization in 2000.

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1900 South Ave.
La Crosse, WI 54601

(608) 782-7300

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