Indiana hospitals spent the weekend with more COVID-19 patients than all but a single day since the state began to publicly report hospital admissions nearly eight months ago, according to officials. State health on Monday.
1,759 coronavirus hospitalizations as of Sunday lasted only one day in mid-April and marked an 80% increase in COVID-19 patients over the past month, the state health ministry said in its row statistics update. day.
Officials at two regional health systems are warning that the spread of the coronavirus in the community is affecting staff qualifications in their healthcare settings.
In statements, officials from both Goshen Health and Memorial Hospital in South Bend said the percentage of people who test positive for COVID-19 is on the rise in the community and hospitals are seeing the number of admissions. Institute spike.
Since starting COVID-19 testing in March, Goshen Health has recorded 19,360 tests with 2,632 positive results. That 13.8% positive rate resulted in nearly 400 hospitalizations during that time, with 42 confirmed deaths from COVID-19 infection.
Dr. Dan Nafziger, Medical Director and Infectious Disease Specialist of Goshen Hospital, warns that staff at both the hospital and the office are exposed to coronavirus in the community and that fact is affecting levels employee care.
“Colleagues are exposed to COVID-19 in the community and are testing positive or need to be quarantined because they are close to someone who has a positive test result. This is causing a shortage of staff related to our hospital as well as other healthcare offices. That’s a real problem, ”Nafziger said in a statement.
He urged people to limit the possible spread of the virus.
“Reduce unnecessary time when you are in public – at work, school, church or shopping. We appreciate everything you do to protect yourself and your loved ones, as well as our healthcare professionals, from viral infections, ”he said. “Smaller gatherings at home with family and friends are also spreading the virus.”
Dr. Dale Patterson, Memorial’s vice president of medical affairs, offers a similar view.
“The COVID pandemic is affecting our employees,” said Patterson in a prepared statement. “Many of our caregivers have worked long hours for several months and it has become increasingly difficult to meet staffing needs as the number of COVID positive patients continues to increase in our facilities. “
The news from Goshen and South Bend came after reports last month of a “super wide” wedding event in St. County Joseph, with the attendance of nurses, is believed to have caused staff problems at regional health facilities.
This event was discussed at the recent St. County Health Department board meeting. Joseph by board member, Dr. Ilana Kirsch, a local obstetrician and gynecologist.
A nurse who knew about the event told Kirsch that the nurses involved did not wear a mask or practice long distances.
In an effort to try to stop the spread of the virus, St. County health officials Joseph has in recent weeks been trying to enforce safety procedures at bars and restaurants, recommending strict restriction on group gatherings and ordering religious groups to suspend live services.
The health department is also pursuing an ordinance that allows fines for businesses that fail to enforce county masking orders on employees, but the St. Council of St. Council. Joseph has voted on the proposal until later this month.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.