MIAMI VALLEY — Four months after people in Ohio learned of the state’s first confirmed case of COVID-19, hospitals in the Dayton region say they are seeing their busiest rush of coronavirus patients to date.
“The numbers are definitely higher,” Dr. Steven Burdette, medical director of Infection Prevention at Miami Valley Hospital, told News Center 7′s Sean Cudahy on Wednesday. “The acuity of COVID we’re seeing in the hospital is as high as we’ve seen in this entire pandemic.”
The same goes for Kettering Medical Center, where Dr. Jeffrey Weinstein, chief quality officer, said a spike in The last three to four weeks has kept medical teams busier than at any point in April or May.
“We’re OK right now, but we’re definitely filling up more than a few weeks ago,” Weinstein said.
At his Thursday news conference, Gov. Mike DeWine said Montgomery County has seen emergency room visits for COVID-19 nearly double, ICU and ventilator usage triple, and outpatient visits quadruple since early June. Those numbers are part of the reason Montgomery County remains “red” on the state’s pandemic alert system, along with Butler and several other Ohio counties.
“Recent community outbreaks include settings such as workplaces, restaurants and nursing homes,” DeWine said.
Despite the increase in coronavirus patients, hospital officials, as of now, remain optimistic about their ability to handle the patient load.
Weinstein said Kettering Health Network monitors its patient census daily and has the ability to open new COVID-19 wings of hospitals at several locations where those patients are treated in the region.
Both Kettering and Premier Health Networks have told WHIO in the last two weeks that their stock of personal protective equipment (PPE) and ventilators remains in good shape, despite nationwide shortages earlier this year. Still, all of this is something hospital leaders will continue to monitor.
“We’re well positioned to take care of these patients,” Weinstein said. “It’s just a matter of staying on top of the epidemic, planning in advance, making sure if these increase we’ve seen over the last three to four weeks continues, that we’re ready for that.”
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