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How hospitals are handling a surge in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations

Published: Dec. 1, 2020 at 5:24 PM EST
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BRIDGEPORT, W.Va (WDTV) - Another surge in positive COVID-19 cases is expected to be even greater by Christmas and New Year’s according to experts, and with more cases comes more hospitalizations.

“We are starting to see the first surge in terms of hospitalization in our state so we are essentially entering a new phase of this pandemic,” said Vice President of Legislative Affairs (WVHA) Toney Gregory.

With the current state of the pandemic and the expectancy for it to worsen, hospitals are preparing to take on an increase in patients.

Officials at Ruby Memorial Hospital have decided to limit surgeries that require hospital admission.

“We are trying to cut back on things that will not impact the health and welfare of the patient and can be safely deferred,” said Ruby Memorial Hospital Chief Operating Officer Ron Pellegrino.

While hospitals are cutting back, so are patients. According to the U.S. Census, close to 350,000 West Virginian’s have delayed medical care because of the pandemic and based off of a recent CDC survey, 40% of people across the country have also done the same.

“I wish I could say that because of the pandemic fewer people were having heart attacks, but I don’t think that was the case, but fewer people were coming to the hospital with heart attacks,” continued Pellegrino.

Healthcare officials say not to put your life on the line, but it’s still important to seek medical help when needed and there’s ways to do so before needing emergency care.

“See your doctors regularly so you can get proper preventive care to keep our hospital numbers down,” said Gregory.

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