COVID-19 cases at St. Cloud Hospital rose again this week and are now at levels not seen since late December 2020. CentraCare spokesperson Dr. George Morris joined me on WJON this week. He says CentraCare has 120 positive COVID-19 cases, 100 of which are at St. Cloud Hospital. The other 20 people are scattered across the CentraCare hospitals in Willmar, Paynesville, Sauk Center and Monticello. Morris says St. Cloud Hospital has 27 people in the ICU/Critical Care Unit, 25 of whom are on ventilators.
Figures last week at CentraCare had 100 COVID-positive patients with 80 at St. Cloud Hospital. Last week, St. Cloud Hospital had 24 patients in the ICU/Critical Care.
St. Cloud Hospital continues to be full. dr. Morris says the increased number of COVID-19 patients has prevented them from caring for as many non-COVID-19 patients. Morris says they have normally been able to accept transfers from other hospitals, but they cannot now. He says they are creative with their people and spaces and look for help wherever they can get it. dr. Morris says they are reaching out to medically licensed people who are willing to help. He says they are hiring, looking for volunteers and building their team. He says they are looking to every possible source to get more help.
The St. Cloud area positivity rate is up from 17% last week to 18% this week. Minnesota state positivity rate is 9.7%. Morris is concerned about the extra contact people will have with each other during the upcoming holiday season. He urges caution and encourages vaccines and boosters.
To schedule a vaccine with CentraCare, call 320-200-3200. Morris says their maximum vaccination site on the south side also accepts walk-ins. If you look at my conversation with Dr. Morris if you want to listen, it’s available below.