Local hospitals preparing for increase in COVID-19 hospitalizations

Coronavirus Local Impact

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The number of patients in Massachusetts hospitals is surging, and health experts believe the worst is yet to come.

More than 100,000 people are hospitalized with COVID-19 in the country for first time in nearly four months and health experts are bracing for several record-breaking days in the weeks ahead.

Chief Clinical Officer Dr. Syed Hussain of Trinity Health New England says its hospitals are reaching capacity limits and with holidays in the rear view mirror, it’s likely we are still several weeks away from seeing the peak.

“The next few weeks will be difficult, no question,” said Dr. Hussain.

The omicron variant is on track to become the most dominant strain in Massachusetts and Connecticut. Some becoming frustrated after getting fully vaccinated and boosted, yet still getting sick. Doctors say the vaccines were designed to prevent severe disease, hospitalization, and death. They were not designed to prevent infection.

“If you look at who is in our hospitals, who is getting hospitalized with severe disease, the majority, 75 percent of them are unvaccinated individuals,” said Dr. Hussain.

As hospitalizations rise, Trinity Health has plans in place to make sure they can still care for all of its patients.

“In the event that our COVID-19 patients continues to go up, we have the ability to transform non-care areas into clinical care areas.”

Baystate Health is caring for 233 COVID-19 patients. That is another daily record set for the hospital system.

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