As our county continues to see increases in COVID cases from the Omicron variant, your local hospital and community healthcare providers are asking for your help as we continue to care for our community and anticipate continued surges of COVID cases. The new Omicron variant is spreading faster and easier than previous variants. The monoclonal infusions that have been administered to many in the community are not showing effectiveness with this new variant and are no longer indicated for use as this new variant spreads. Just like every other healthcare system in the country, our system is becoming overwhelmed. We are experiencing staffing challenges in every department, and our staff is working overtime to care for our community. Emergency department visits are up due to the number of COVID cases, which is causing longer than normal wait times. Longer hospital stays and increased admissions due to COVID are causing fewer beds to be available for routine hospital needs such as pneumonia, heart attack, strokes, and surgical procedures. Our ability to transfer patients to higher levels of care for procedures and intensive needs is limited because the larger healthcare systems are also experiencing increased volumes of COVID cases, prolonged hospital stays, and serious staffing challenges. These delays can mean the difference between life and death.
We are asking for the public’s help to make sure that our local healthcare resources can continue to serve everyone who needs care. Please do your part to stay well by wearing a mask in public places and getting vaccinated. The COVID vaccine is effective in preventing severe illness and hospitalization. It does not completely prevent COVID but dramatically lessens the chance of being admitted to the hospital, being placed on a ventilator, or dying. We are asking you to please get vaccinated if you have not yet done so. Consider your own health, the health of your family and the health of your community. While you may be healthy and think you will not get sick with COVID, this new variant spreads much more easily than previous variants. You can pass this along to someone in your family or community who may become ill and require hospitalization.
Your healthcare community is here for you, but we need your help more than ever. Please talk with your healthcare provider about the vaccine if you have not yet received it. Stay home if you are not feeling well. For your health, the health of your family and the health of your community, please do your part.