Springfield hospitals see an increase in COVID-19 patients

CoxHealth and Mercy hospitals have both reported an increase in COVID-19 hospitalizations.
Published: Dec. 2, 2021 at 10:44 AM CST
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) -CoxHealth and Mercy hospitals have both reported an increase in COVID-19 hospitalizations.

In a Facebook post, CoxHealth stated that 64 patients were hospitalized with the virus. The number of patients is up from 40 last week and in the 20s the week before. Mercy has also seen a dramatic increase in patients

“It’s been a slow and gradual increase over the last two weeks,” said Mercy Springfield Chief Administrative Officer Erik Frederick. “Today, our infectious inpatient census is at 45 after about 7 yesterday. We’re seeing a little bit of a pickup in our ICU census as well. Today, we’ve got 12 in the ICU, 10 of those are on ventilators.”

Health leaders say that the increase in hospitalizations could be due to the increase in gatherings and decreased precautionary measures like mask-wearing.

“At this time last year, people were being very cautious,” said Frederick “They were still wearing masks, a lot of places were limiting capacity, and some were gathering in larger meeting spaces. A lot that is not where it was last year.”

During the winter months, hospitals see an increase in patients due to flu season and people spending more time inside. While the rise in COVID-19 cases is concerning, CoxHealth and Mercy are seeing fewer patients hospitalized now than this summer as the Delta variant spread through the Ozarks.

“We’re still managing through it,” said Fredrick “I think it’s just getting used to moving pieces around because of the needs of the COVID patient and the staffing demand that they need. You just make room and you move people around and try to get everyone used to cohorting and taking care of that group of patients again.”

Health leaders say that the best way to prevent being hospitalized with COVID-19 is to get vaccinated. If you have already been fully vaccinated, they encourage getting the booster when you are eligible.

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