For immediate release
March 12, 2020
Muscogee (Creek) Nation develops Coronavirus Task Force
OKMULGEE, Okla. – The Muscogee (Creek) Nation has established a COVID-19 Task Force to evaluate and implement measures to stop the spread of the Coronavirus Disease, also known as COVID-19. The task force is comprised of the Office of the Principal Chief, health administrators, cabinet members and representatives from independent tribal agencies.
“We are monitoring the situation daily and adapting our policies accordingly,” said David Hill, Principal Chief of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation. “It is vital that we are proactive in finding solutions to keep our citizens and members of the community safe,” he added.
The Muscogee (Creek) Nation Department of Health (MCNDOH), which serves more than 120,000 patients visits annually and provides inpatient and emergency services to both Native and Non-Native patients through its community hospitals, has protocols in place to identify and isolate potential at-risk patients.
“We are in close communication with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Oklahoma State Department of Health to ensure we are following the latest guidelines to treat patients,” stated Shawn Terry, Secretary of Health of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation. “To mitigate the spread of any potential infection, housekeeping will clean high-touch areas in our health care facilities such as lobbies, bathrooms and light switches every two hours with products proven to effectively disinfect surfaces.”
MCN has taken the following measures with employees to stop the spread of infection:
- Effective March 11, non-essential travel will be suspended for the next two weeks.
- Employees are encouraged not to personally travel to high-risk areas, and will be asked to stay home if they are ill.
- Employees are being advised on proper hand washing and use of hand sanitizer, and encouraged to practice social distancing to minimize the spread of infection.
- The MCNDOH is providing in-service training across tribal entities.
MCN has adjusted business operations to prevent a potential outbreak:
- MCN is canceling tribally hosted conferences that attract large crowds over the next two weeks.
- Muscogee (Creek) Nation Casinos has expanded facility cleaning to incorporate health-grade disinfectants and additional hand sanitizers will be placed in high-traffic areas. Currently, River Spirit Casino Resort does not have plans to postpone events at Paradise Cove Theater. However, the Resort team is working with its national and local corporate customers to reschedule events in its Resort Conference Center due to policies from corporations restricting travel by its employees.
“We are reviewing our operational plans to ensure department leaders are aware of emergency response plans,” said Del Beaver, Second Chief of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation. ”
Adjustments to our daily operations will continue to be made as needed, and we appreciate the support of our employees and citizens during this uncertain time.” MCN’s COVID-19 Task Force will continue to monitor the situation daily and adapt polices in accordance with CDC guidelines.
For more information about COVID-19 visit www.cdc.gov/covid19.