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Surge of unvaccinated COVID-19 patients strains most northern Nevada hospitals

Surge of unvaccinated COVID-19 patients strains most northern Nevada hospitals
Surge of unvaccinated COVID-19 patients strains most northern Nevada hospitals
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Most northern Nevada hospitals are at capacity, according to the Nevada Hospital Association, as unvaccinated COVID-19 patients push the region's health care system to the brink.

As of Tuesday, over 250 people were hospitalized with COVID-19 in Washoe County and Carson City. The 'overwhelming majority' were unvaccinated, hospital officials said.

The summer surge has pushed health care providers to a breaking point. One woman told News 4-FOX 11 that she her mom, who needed emergency surgery, died after she couldn't get into an intensive care unit for nine hours.

They're rationing care. They're rationing care It's not just happening down south. It is right here in northern Nevada.

"They (didn't) have an operating room at the moment," Stacey Wright said of what doctors told her when she took her 75-year-old mother to Carson Tahoe Health earlier this month.

"They (didn't) have ICU at the moment. They were short ventilators to intubate her for surgery," she said.

Stacey's mother Bonita, who needed surgery on a perforated bowel, died in the hospital. Wright told News 4-FOX 11 that doctors and nurses told her the delay in getting her mother into surgery was because unvaccinated COVID-19 patients strained hospital staff and resources.

"They were completely filled with COVID (patients). You'd be in the room with my mother and they'd say 'New patient, COVID, room this new patient.' It was like a movie."

Bonita left behind her husband Larry of 57 years and two daughters. Stacey said she was her best friend, the best grandmother to her son, and always supported her and her sister growing up.

Stacey urged the millions of Americans still waiting to get the COVID-19 vaccine to think about the impact their decision could have on others.

Your body, your choice became my mother's body, your choice. My mother was not dying before that day. My mother could have been saved.

As of Tuesday, 209 people were hospitalized in Washoe County with COVID-19, the highest number since early January. 42 patients were hospitalized in Carson City.

A Carson Tahoe Health representative said in a written statement she couldn't comment on the specific case because of health privacy laws, but said hospital officials were sorry to hear about the situation and sent their condolences to the family.

Hospitals around the country are seeing surges in overall hospital volumes. CTH has called in additional resources as we are operating at near capacity with both COVID and non-COVID patients. We regularly evaluate our patient flow and placement. Our staff is working tirelessly to do our part in caring for the community.
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A spokesperson for the Nevada Hospital Association urged people to wear a mask, use other resources to get a COVID-19 test and go to urgent care for non-emergency situations.

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