Cleveland hospitals report increase in new COVID infections
The Cleveland Clinic, MetroHealth, and teaching hospitals all voluntarily make adjustments to the scheduling of elective surgery in some locations.
CLEVELLAND – Editor’s Note: The video at the top of this story was originally posted on December 2, 2021.
As new COVID infections continue to rise across Ohio, hospitalizations are also increasing in Cleveland.
“As we continue to navigate the pandemic and adapt to the changing health care needs of our patients, our health systems are experiencing an unprecedented demand for inpatient care in our facilities,” according to a joint statement from the Cleveland Clinic, University Hospitals and MetroHealth. “This has led our hospitals to near capacity in many places. Our organizations are experiencing a significant increase in the number of unvaccinated patients hospitalized due to COVID-19. “
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All three hospital systems are reporting an increase in the number of COVID patients, with university hospitals claiming to have reached a “record count of COVID-19 hospitalized patients”.
As a result, the Cleveland Clinic, MetroHealth, and teaching hospitals all voluntarily make adjustments to the scheduling of elective surgeries in certain locations.
“The safety of patients and caregivers remains our top priority,” their statement said. “This action frees up resources for patients with immediate and life-threatening needs and manages the demands of frontline caregivers, who have served with distinction throughout the pandemic. We remain available to provide care for patients facing an emergency, life-threatening illness or prescribed screening or tests, as well as providing outpatient surgeries that do not require a hospital bed. “
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Here are the changes you can expect …
The Cleveland Clinic will temporarily stop scheduling additional elective surgeries requiring a hospital bed at our facilities in Ohio, except Euclid and Lutheran Hospitals, from Monday, December 6, 2021 through Monday, January 3, 2022. Essential and urgent surgeries, as well as cardiac, cancer, pediatric and transplant surgeries, and outpatient surgeries not requiring a hospital bed will continue to be scheduled during this time. We will continue to assess our scheduled surgical patients as the pandemic continues.
In response to the high demand for inpatient care – involving both COVID and non-COVID cases – we have started to postpone some elective surgeries to free up space in our hospitals. We are also exercising other options, such as encouraging greater use of our Hospital in the Home program, to respond to the latest wave of patients.
University hospitals are currently rescheduling some elective surgeries at UH Cleveland Medical Center that require short-term hospitalization. Currently, UH Cleveland Medical Center continues to perform urgent and outpatient surgeries and procedures that do not involve an overnight stay. Teaching hospitals continue to perform all types of surgeries and procedures in their community hospitals, although the situation is fluid and subject to change. Doctors at teaching hospitals see patients as they always have, and UH labs and testing centers are open.
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The joint statement, which was released shortly before 9 a.m. on Friday, also urges all eligible people to be vaccinated.
“More than 90% of COVID-19 patients in intensive care are not vaccinated,” the statement said. “This means that vaccination protects people against serious illnesses. The majority of vaccinated patients who are hospitalized have underlying health problems. “