Visiting Hour Restrictions at DECH

Visitation Restrictions Enacted to Protect Patient’s Safety

Machias – Due to the high numbers of respiratory illness and the recent news that Maine has experienced its first confirmed case of COVID-19, Down East Community Hospital and all its provider practices in Machias, Jonesport, and Milbridge have implemented visitor restrictions.  Those restrictions will remain in effect until further notice.
In an effort to protect our patients and the surrounding community, the following restrictions are in force.  Visitors who are ill with flu or cold symptoms, fever, sore throat, cough, sneezing, runny/stuffy nose, vomiting and/or diarrhea will not be permitted.  There will only be one visitor allowed per patient in all areas. Members of the public coming to the hospital can be expected to be screened and asked to clean their hands.  No visitors will be allowed for patients who have a pending or positive COVID-19 test.  Lastly, all visitors must be 16 years or older.  Special exceptions may be made to the visiting restrictions for OB patients and patients at end of life or in hospice care and those exceptions will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by a nursing manager.
President and CEO, Steve Lail,  “This was a difficult decision to make, but we must put the safety of our patients first.  We also need to protect our staff and the community.  We may find later that safety warrants an increase to the restrictions and we will absolutely do that if the need arises.  You can be assured that we are continually updated by the Maine CDC and have all infection prevention and emergency preparedness protocols in place.” 
If you have recently traveled to areas affected by COVID-19 or have been in close contact with someone who has, or are showing signs of illness, please refrain from visiting family or friends in the hospital.  If you are exhibiting symptoms of a respiratory infection, and must be at the hospital, please wear a mask.  If you are exhibiting symptoms and need to come to the Emergency Department or visit your provider, call ahead so the caregivers can make the necessary preparations for your arrival.
There are simple things you can do to help keep yourself and others healthy.
·         Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
·         Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
·         Stay at home when you are sick.
·         Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue into the trash.
For up to date information go to Maine CDC’s COVID-19 website at or by calling Maine CDC at 1-800-821-5821.

DECH Employees Recognized for Years of Service

Lien Crocker and CEO Steve Lail have some fun during the presentation of Lein’s 40-year pin.

Annually, DECH celebrates the years of service for those employees who, during the year, reached their 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, and 40th year of service. Lien Crocker, received her 40-year pin for reaching that landmark in 2018! If you have ever visited or been a patient at DECH, you have probably met Lien.  Lien works in Environmental Services and will be the first to tell you she loves her job, cares for her co-workers and appreciates how everyone is always so good to her.  If you had the chance to encounter Lien while she was at work, she would have met you with a smile, a warm greeting and maybe even a hug if she knows you. Thank you, Lien, for being a member of the DECH family!

Other employment milestones reached during 2018:
35 Years: Elizabeth Faraci
25 Years: Nicholas Cianciola
20 Years: Dee Kelley, Lynnette Parr, Ernie Reisman
15 Years: Anna Baskerville, Patricia Bridges, Elaine Johnson, Gail Roberts, Heidi Schwinn, Jennifer Strout
10 Years: Ann Alley, Kim Dube, Aaron Fogg, William Howard, Monique Mills, Nicole Riddell, Sarah Trynor, Alf Wakeman
5 years: Kim Alley, Tonja Alley, Steen Belanger, Jennifer Brodie, Nancy Fitzgerald, Penny Guerra, Joelle Jackson, Karen Joeckel, Dana Lang, Darci Libby, Jessica Murry, Heather Wright

DECH Welcomes the First Baby of 2019

On January 1, DECH welcomed its first baby of 2019.  Matt and Molly Hall and their three daughters welcomed Ezra James Hall to their family at 7:33am.

DECH to Close Calais OB/GYN Clinic in December 

In November 2017, Down East Community Hospital and Calais Regional Hospital partnered to bring an OB clinic to Calais after CRH had to make the tough decision to close its OB unit.  That clinic is now scheduled to close on Friday, December 28, 2018.

Down East Community Hospital Received Platinum Award – Is Recognized Nationally for Promoting Organ, Eye, and Tissue Donation

Down East Community Hospital is among a select group of hospitals nationwide recognized for promoting enrollment in state organ donor registries in a national campaign sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). The campaign has added more than 443,000 donor enrollments to state registries nationwide.

DECH – New CEO Takes the Helm

Steve Lail officially took the helm as Down East Community Hospital CEO on November 1, 2018.  With almost two weeks underway, everything is moving smoothly ahead.

DECH CEO Announces Successor

DECH CEO, Dennis Welsh, announces Steve Lail as his successor.  Steve will take on the duties as the hospital’s new CEO on November 1, 2018. 

DECH Announces New Board Chair, Welcomes New Members

Wayne Peters becomes the new Board Chair of Down East Community Hospital as former Chair, David Whitney, terms off the Board.  Mr. Whitney was on the Board for 9 years and served as Chair since 2014.  “David dedicated many hours of service to the hospital over the past 9 years and we can’t say enough about how much we appreciated his work on the capital campaign to raise the needed funds for the Emergency Department expansion.” Dennis Welsh, DECH President & CEO.

DEC Rehabilitation Receives $7,500 Grant for Balance Program

Rehabilitation Manager, Heather Dodsworth, applied for and was awarded a grant in the amount of $7,500 from the Maine Community Foundation!  The funds are to help in the purchase of a Balance Assessment and Conditioning system to assist in the development and implementation a comprehensive balance program for the citizens of Washington County including identifying persons at risk for falls and improving agility, muscle tone and strength, range of motion, and safe mobility.