Highest number of hospitalizations in Sioux Falls since the beginning of the pandemic

FILE - A syringe is prepared with the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at a clinic in the Norristown...
FILE - A syringe is prepared with the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at a clinic in the Norristown Public Health Center in Norristown, Pa., Tuesday, Dec. 7, 2021.(AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
Published: Jan. 20, 2022 at 4:14 PM CST
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - Sioux Falls is seeing some of the highest numbers of hospitalizations since the beginning of the pandemic, making it the fourth-largest surge.

Dr. David Basel from Avera Health and Dr. Mike Wilde from Sanford Health shared their concerns on rising COVID-19 cases during a news conference Thursday, as they battle a shortage of testing and treatment supplies, and staff. They encourage the use of home tests, saying the results are accurate, and ask patients to avoid coming to the ER for testing- as hospital workers are not immune, and hundreds of hospital staff are out sick.

Although the Omicron variant has turned out to be less severe than prior variants, they note that all patients admitted with COVID are on a ventilator, and 90% are in the ICU. Omicron has also proven to be more contagious- doubling the number of patients admitted since the first of the year.

Recently doctors have had to make some difficult decisions, such as who will get a bed. Front-line workers have done their best to battle-test surge plans, but they need help from the community.

Officials urge people to get vaccinated, as 90% of patients admitted with COVID were unvaccinated and got sick. Statistics show that 84% of unvaccinated or boosted patients are in their 20′s and 30′s, Doctors ask everyone to do their part to minimize the spread of the virus.

Here are some guidelines to follow:

1. Get vaccinated and boosted.

2. Symptoms can overlap with the common cold, so stay home and get tested.

3. Use masks, wash your hands, and social distance.

By spring, hopefully, we will see a decline and be in a better place.

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