CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP – Thanksgiving celebrations are being blamed for an increase in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations across the state.
Hospitalizations continue to climb in Massachusetts, as of Monday, over 1,500 people are receiving treatment, with 302 people requiring care in the ICU. In western Massachusetts, about 18 percent of non-ICU beds are available. Statewide, about 23 percent are open.
Beginning Friday, Governor Baker will put a temporary halt to in-patient elective surgeries that can safely be postponed. Elective surgeries include removing a mole or having kidney stones removed.
Emergencies, preventative measures, or conditions that will significantly worsen if surgery is not performed, are not considered elective surgeries, and they will continue.
Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders said this includes mammograms, colonoscopies, or regular pediatric checkups. The goal of this is to free up medical staff and beds so they can be prepared for more COVID patients.
In addition to the field hospital that just opened in Worcester, another will be opening in Lowell later this month.