Daytona Beach, FL - A new report from AdventHealth says the healthcare system is still witnessing a record number of COVID-19 hospitalizations.
Per an email from AdventHealth, around 1,620 patients are hospitalized with COVID-19 across their Central Florida hospitals, which beats the 1,060 patients that were reported near the end of July.
“This is unfortunately a crisis of unprecedented proportions,” said Dr. Vincent Hsu, executive director of infection prevention and epidemiologist. “This is two times the amount of COVID patients we had during the winter peak.”
Hsu added that "extensive and sophisticated plans"have been put into place to adjust to care for more patients in recent weeks. That includes deferring non-emergent elective surgeries, as they have done previously, and repurposing beds in procedure areas for sick patients as intensive care units are expanded into other parts of their hospitals.
But while cases and hospitalizations in the state climb, Hsu said the current trends are beginning to show some positive signs.
“We do see some light at the end of the tunnel,” Hsu said. “The growth that we have is slowing... we can still avert a worsening of the surge with vaccination, wearing masks and distancing whenever possible.”
Hsu then stated people who are immunosuppressed, such as transplant patients or those undergoing cancer treatment, are eligible for a third dose of the vaccine now. Booster shots for the general public are expected to be available late next month. The boosters will be the same doses as the original two shots provided by Pfizer and Moderna, but are intended to increase protection against the virus after immunity from the first shots could have waned in some people, per AdventHealth.
Hsu is also encouraging the community to get flu shots this year and said it’s possible to get flu and COVID-19 inoculations at the same time.
“We are expecting this will be a significant flu season,” Hsu added.
If you are looking to receive a COVID-19 vaccine but don't know where to go, check the state's COVID-19 Vaccine locator.
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