COVID-19, respiratory diseases increasing hospital admissions in children, putting strain on staff

DAYTON — A nurse in Dayton Children’s Hospital’s emergency department is talking about the strain staff have been under as COVID-19 and other respiratory illnesses continue to heavily impact children.

Michelle Nadolsky, a Dayton Children’s Hospital nurse, told News Center 7′s John Bedell that staff in the hospital’s emergency department are dealing with “large volumes of patients in every age group with multitudes of respiratory illnesses.”

“This is not something that we see this time of year,” Nadolsky said.

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In addition to COVID-19, Nadolsky said staff has seen a record number of patients with other respiratory illnesses, such as RSV and Bronchiolitis, over the last three months. While those illnesses normally hit children in the winter, this year they have peaked in the summer and fall.

Nadolsky told News Center 7 that due to the large number of hospital admissions for children, Dayton Children’s has been at full capacity for more than a month at a time.

“And so it’s very delicate how we have to work,” Nadolsky said. “We find a place for everyone, but it just may not be the exact place we like them to be and it might not be in the timeframe we would like it to happen, but we find a place for every kid that needs out care.”

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Nadolsky noted that while they have started to see a drop in daily hospital visits, the toll the last year and a half has taken on staff has shown. She asked people to be patient with each other, regardless of where they work.

“It’s been difficult these past 18 months to two years for all of us. No matter where you are and what you do, its been difficult and we all need to take a moment and remember to be kind,” Nadolsky said.