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COVID-19 hospitalization increases, test positive rate reaches 20% | COVID-19 (new coronavirus infection)

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Traverse City — COVID-19 hospitalizations surged again as the Munson Medical Center aggregated 73 inpatients at Traverse City Hospital.

Currently, 134 patients are hospitalized at all Manson facilities. This is the peak of the hospital system and is a barometer of the intensity of the fourth wave of coronavirus that has contacted all counties in Michigan in the past few weeks.

Continued coverage of COVID-19 and its impact. If you have a question about a new coronavirus pandemic and couldn’t find it …

At a press conference on Tuesday, doctors and county health officials said the current wave was escalating and only burdening hospitals, pediatricians were overbooked, understaffed, and the number of cases was high. Revealed that it only increases during vacations.

“We are basically overwhelmed,” said Jim Robertson, a pediatrician at the Kids Creek Children’s Clinic in Garfield Township. “The numbers are going through the roof. Even in an emergency, it’s difficult to make a reservation now.”

Wendy Hilsenberger, a health officer at the Grand Traverse County Health Department, said six people have died in the county in the last seven days, especially for the unvaccinated elderly and those with underlying illness. He continued to emphasize that it was fatal.

Hirschenberger likened the current surge to a holiday wave that occurred around the same time last year. Patient hospitalizations increased as rally settings moved more and more indoors and Thanksgiving trips brought infectious patients across state boundaries.

As a result, the number of cases has doubled in the last two weeks, with a positive rate of 20.3%, Hirschenberger said.

“This is the best we’ve ever seen,” said Hirschenberger.

In Manson, 24% of hospitalized patients are vaccinated, said Christine Nefcy, chief medical officer of the hospital system. Of the 56 patients currently in the ICU bed, 7 are vaccinated.

Nefsey said these breakthroughs should not be considered a vaccine failure. Hospitalization of breakthrough cases tends to occur in older patients with comorbidities that exacerbate COVID-19.

“That hospitalization rate remains really high for those older members of our community who have an underlying condition,” Nefsey said. “People who have asked us to continue to make our own cocoons will still say so. We need to be very careful, regardless of the vaccination situation.”

Data from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services also continue to support the effectiveness of the vaccine in the prevention of fatal cases of COVID-19.

The resurrected case numbers have also caused some operational changes. Nefcy said the visit time is currently limited to 2 hours. The exception is pediatric or obstetric patients. Currently, other patients are only allowed one visitor per day.

The new rules came into effect on Tuesday.

Childhood cases are also causing increasing concern. Less than 20% of children aged 5 to 11 years are vaccinated in both the Benji-Leelanau Health District and Grand Traverse County, according to data released at a press conference by the county health authorities.

“We are still seeing children who are very ill with COVID-19, and with this recent surge we have seen an increase in pediatric patients hospitalized with COVID-19,” Nefcy said. rice field.

Manson Medical Center does not have a pediatric ICU. That is, more severely ill children are sent to Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital in Grand Rapids. Nefcy estimated that the hospital had already transferred 10 pediatric patients.

Robertson, a pediatrician at Kids Creek, believes part of the surge is due to the reopening of school. He said the whole family tested positive when the children picked up the case in the classroom and brought the virus home.

At his clinic, Robertson said he saw a case of a two-year-old child. He estimates that half of the 20-30 pediatric patients he tests daily are found to be positive.

“Why are we so worried when there are so many ideas that children don’t get so sick?” Robertson said.

“But what is of concern from a community perspective is that we know that we are infected with the flu each year, but when the infection reaches the pediatric population, it causes the infection in the community. is.”

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