Augusta Health provides vaccination and COVID-19 update

Augusta Health provides a vaccination and postivity rate update.
Augusta Health provides a vaccination and postivity rate update.(Augusta Health | WHSV)
Published: Sep. 9, 2021 at 2:38 PM EDT
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - Over the 24 hours preceding 9 am on Thursday, September 9, Augusta Health reports there were 112 new positive COVID-19 cases diagnosed through Augusta Health testing sites.

Augusta Health says this is the second highest daily positive total during the pandemic; the highest daily total was 118 on August 29.

Officials with Augusta Health say current inpatient COVID-19 census is 67 and increasing daily. They say they anticipate that their local surge will continue through the end of September, and they will reach a census of more than 100 inpatient COVID-19 patients.

Generally, about 20% of Augusta Health’s COVID-19 patients are critical care/ICU level patients. Very sick, high acuity patients like COVID-19 patients require more resources—both technical and staff—to provide the care they need.

Augusta Health’s predictive models and projections are also used to create a detailed Surge Plan to address the increase in both positive cases and admission of COVID-19 patients to the hospital. A dedicated team is focused on Surge Planning and adapt on a daily and even hourly basis. Some of the steps recently taken as part of the Surge Plan:

  • Temporary closing of facilities or departments so staff and space can be reassigned. -The Skilled Nursing Floor and other units have been temporarily closed and converted for COVID care. The number of ICU beds has been increased. -Surgeries have been reduced to 40-50% of the usual volume and staff and resources redeployed. All necessary surgeries are completed and medical staff is consulted to prioritize other surgeries.
  • Additional resources have been provided to Augusta Health in case they are needed. These include a Base X tent that has been erected outside the Emergency Department and access to a temporary morgue trailer. To date, they have not been used.

Augusta Health says this is an urgent situation that is fluid and dynamic, and many in the community are asking how they can help. Augusta Health says the answer is to vaccinate, wear masks indoors even if vaccinated, wash hands frequently and stay socially distant from others when possible.

Augusta Health adds that COVID vaccinations are the still the most effective and lasting way to prevent COVID infections in our community, and the best defense against serious illness and death.

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