As Delta variant spreads, Florida hospitals race to find open beds

As Delta variant spreads, Florida hospitals race to find open beds

[Ed. – Sobering report]

Nurse Darlene Andrews stood before a small crew responsible for stopping the latest pandemic surge from overrunning seven of AdventHealth’s Orlando-area hospitals.

She quickly listed occupancy at each hospital. Six were beyond full capacity, with one at 123% for adults. Nearby wall-mounted screens streaming hospital data showed more than 90 patients — some with Covid-19, some seeking other care — needed beds. One had been waiting more than two days.

A hospital in Altamonte Springs, Fla., and another east of downtown Orlando were the current hot spots, nurse Andrew Stakelum told the group, a team that oversees work that has become critical for U.S. hospitals during each pandemic surge: finding an open bed for severely ill patients. Delays leave patients unstable from Covid-19 or other ailments in dangerous limbo.

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