Orlando, FL - The number of people who need to be hospitalized due to COVID-19 at AdventHealth Central Florida hospitals is the highest it's been at any point during the pandemic. The new high of about 1,000 was reached today (July 29).
“We are still seeing a rise in cases every day and that has not let up,” said Dr. Vincent Hsu, executive director of infection prevention and an epidemiologist said today, “I’m confident we are still going to see a significant number over the next week or so.”
Another issue is the number of unvaccinated pregnant women. Dr. Michael Cacciatore, chief medical officer for AdventHealth Medical Group and an OB-GYN, said he’s increasingly seeing cases of pregnant women, who are unvaccinated, develop severe COVID infections and require intubation and life support.
Dr. Cacciatore continued, "Such scenarios put the health of the baby at risk because pregnant women are more susceptible to respiratory complications and their bodies often cannot produce an adequate level of oxygen to support both the mother and the baby, even with a breathing tube. As result, some babies are being emergently delivered pre-term."
Further, Dr. Cacciatore said the risk of an actual COVID-19 infection is far greater than any risk related to the vaccine. He also said there is no impact on fertility for women who get the vaccine.
The highly contagious Delta variant continues to be a driver of COVID spread. Dr. Hsu urged the community to do their part by wearing a mask and getting the vaccine if they haven’t already done so.
About 94 percent of the people hospitalized are not vaccinated. Dr. Hsu said that additional surges are possible unless more people get vaccinated.
“Florida is an epicenter for what’s going on,” he said. “This is a good warning sign for other localities.”