Area hospital network pauses elective inpatient surgeries amid rise in COVID-19 hospitalizations

RICHMOND, Indiana — As the region’s hospitals deal with another surge of COVID-19 hospitalizations one area hospital network is pausing all elective inpatient surgeries to deal with the need for hospital beds.

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Reid Health announced Wednesday the network will pause elective surgeries due to the rising COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, a spokesperson for the network said in a media release.

Reid has paused elective surgeries before due to the pandemic and increasing hospitalizations with the most recent pause coming in September.

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“Emergent/urgent surgeries will proceed as normal, as will outpatient surgeries scheduled at Reid Outpatient Surgery & Endoscopy,” the spokesperson said. “All scheduled surgeries will be reviewed for urgency, and the surgeon’s office will reach out to those patients who need to be rescheduled.”

“The move will allow clinical staff to be available for other inpatient needs as Reid remains on critical bed status.”

Hospital officials again encouraged vaccinations and those eligible for booster shots to schedule those.

“Along with getting vaccinated and booster shots, it’s important everyone -- vaccinated or not -- get back to using masks and maintaining social distancing when out in public places,” Dr. Thomas Huth, MD, Vice President of Medical Affairs for Reid Health said in the release.

“Doing all these things together will give us the best chance at reducing spread in the face of this latest wave.”

Over 86 percent of those hospitalized for COVID-19 within the Reid Health network are unvaccinated. All COVID-19 patients in the ICU and all patients on ventilators are also unvaccinated, according to the hospital network.