As families prepare to gather for the Thanksgiving holiday, some hospitals across the country are overwhelmed by COVID cases and staff shortages, and increases related to holiday gatherings could make the situation worse.
A potentially week-long shutdown of a New York emergency department on Monday was triggered by a staff shortage after unvaccinated health workers were not allowed to continue working due to rule of State. The Mount Sinai South Nassau Emergency Room in Long Beach will refer patients to its Oceanside Emergency Department.
Denver officials said hospitals were filling up, with about 80% of people hospitalized for COVID not being vaccinated, 9News reported. Denver Health CEO Dr Robin Wittenstein told the outlet their system was “on the verge of collapse.”
“We are here today because too many people chose not to get the vaccine even though they were eligible,” Denver Department of Public Health and Environment executive director Bob McDonald said.
The University of Iowa hospital is also concerned about the hardship as cases of COVID and flu are on the rise. In Dubuque County, hospitalizations for COVID are still as high as they were a year ago before vaccines were made available.
“It’s cold now, and people are going to be inside, and everyone’s sick of it,” Chief Medical Officer Theresa Brennan said. “People are hungry for human contact. And because of that, it’s likely people will be less strict about gathering, masking, distancing than they were last year.”
The Upper Midwest cold hospitals, particularly in Michigan and Minnesota, are also filled with COVID-19 patients who are mostly unvaccinated.
Although the availability of vaccines has made family reunions safer, health experts fear that large groups in hot spots, especially with unvaccinated people, could worsen COVID outbreaks during the holidays.
For the holidays, “We encourage people who gather to do so safely after being fully immunized, as we’ve been saying for months,” said Dr Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Also in the news:
►Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett urged residents to get vaccinated against COVID-19 on Tuesday as cases are on the rise, with an average of 267 cases per day and around three deaths per day in the county.
►Steve Burton, who starred in “General Hospital” for over 30 years, was fired from the show for failing to comply with a vaccination warrant, he posted on Instagram.
► Massachusetts hospitals facing limited capacity must cut back on non-essential and non-urgent scheduled procedures under an emergency order following a staff shortage due to the pandemic.
Today’s figures: The United States has recorded more than 47 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 and more than 773,000 deaths, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. Global totals: Over 258 million cases and 5.1 million deaths. More than 196 million Americans – 59% of the population – are fully immunized, according to the CDC.
??What we read: COVID has pushed a decades-long shortage of emergency medical services workers in Michigan into crisis. How long before people call 911 and it takes too long for help to arrive, if ever?
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Medical, education and transit entities fight over exemptions from Tennessee’s new COVID law
Dozens of Tennessee health care, higher education and consulting entities last week requested an official exemption from the new state law that strictly prevents businesses from applying COVID-19 restrictions.
The legislation, enacted earlier this month by Governor Bill Lee, prohibits most private companies from requiring COVID-19 vaccines or proof of vaccination. But the bill included a provision for entities at risk of losing significant federal funds if they followed Tennessee’s new law, such as federal contractors, transportation authorities, and healthcare providers who treat Medicare or Medicare patients. Medicaid.
The Tennessee comptroller began accepting exemption requests on November 15 and received 76 by the end of the week, although legitimate requests were slightly lower due to some duplicate and erroneous submissions. So far, denials have been rare.
Of the 76 requests, five were refused and 44 are pending approval.
– Melissa Brown, The Nashville Tennessean
Is Another Major Wave Of COVID-19 Heading To Kentucky?
Perhaps, say some local health professionals who have observed a gradual increase in new cases. The recovery follows a sharp decrease in cases that followed a summer flare-up caused by the delta variant.
“I think… if you look across the country, we clearly see another wave,” said Dr. Jon Klein, associate dean of research at the University of Louisville School of Medicine.
“If you look at the places that are booming, I have a hard time finding evidence that we are an exception,” said Klein, a member of a local COVID-19 task force made up of health officials. “We just have too many people who are not vaccinated.”
New infections and the rate of positive COVID-19 cases have been increasing for a few weeks after falling in mid-October.
Kentucky reported 44 new deaths on Monday, 822 new cases – the highest Monday in four weeks. Saturday and Sunday – with 2,048 and 1,018 new cases, respectively – were also the worst Saturday and Sunday of the month.
– Deborah Yetter and Sarah Ladd, Louisville Courier-Journal
Contribution: The Associated Press