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How ARHS is responding to COVID-19


During the past week, ARHS has made significant strides toward dealing with COVID-19. We have:

  • Launched a community-wide telehealth COVID-19 screening program through a partnership with RelyMD
  • Established a hospital incident command center
  • Enacted visitor restrictions at Watauga Medical Center and Cannon Memorial Hospital
  • Created two alternative COVID-19 testing sites
  • Designated a COVID-19 unit within Watauga Medical Center to extend our ICU capability
  • Closed non-essential areas
  • Postponed all elective surgeries/procedures at Watauga Medical Center and Cannon Memorial Hospital
  • Created a recreation program for our employees’ children
  • Deployed daily communication updates for employees and the community

All areas of our organization have and will continue to adapt to fulfill our mission to make life better for our community.

“These are truly extraordinary circumstances,” said Chuck Mantooth, President and CEO for Appalachian Regional Healthcare System. “ARHS is blessed to have staff and medical providers dedicated to taking care of our community during this time of constant change.”


Visitor Restrictions


Watauga Medical Center and Cannon Memorial Hospital:

Patients must designate ONE visitor during their hospital stay. Designated visitors may check in and receive a visitor badge. Visiting hours are 7:00 am – 7:00 pm.

  • One designated visitor per patient
  • No visitors who are sick
  • Must be 13 or older
  • No vendors are allowed
  • Waiting rooms and cafeterias are closed to the public

Medical Offices and Outpatient Clinics:

  • Only those who are essential to your care may come with you to appointments.

NEW: Designated visitors to Watauga Medical Center and Cannon Memorial Hospital will now have their temperature checked before entering


How to contact patients during visitor restrictions


We have set up a patient mailbox at the entrance of Watauga Medical Center (WMC) and Charles A. Cannon, Jr. Memorial Hospital (CMH) so that you or your children may drop off a note of encouragement that will be hand delivered. The box will be checked and notes will be delivered three times per day. There will be paper, envelopes, and pens available. Just remember to include the patient’s name and room number on the front of the envelope.

Of course you can still stay in touch by phone. At WMC, you can contact the room directly by calling (828) 262-4+the room number. At CMH, just call (828) 737-74+the last two digits of the room number.

You may also send a note by using the U.S. Postal Service. The mailing address for WMC is 336 Deerfield Rd., Boone, NC 28607 and the CMH address in 434 Hospital Dr., Linville, NC 28646. And please remember to include the patient’s name and room number on the envelope.