COVID-19 surge forces UNC Rex to delay opening new hospital

Raleigh, N.C.-based UNC Rex Healthcare will delay opening its new hospital in Holly Springs, N.C., as the health system manages a COVID-19 surge, according to The News & Observer. 

UNC Rex Holly Springs was slated to open in September. Now, the opening date is pushed to November to ensure UNC Rex has enough staff and resources at its main campus in Raleigh. The health system said the opening date will depend on the COVID-19 surge this fall. 

"This was a difficult decision, but we need all hands on deck to respond to the rapid surge of COVID patients," Ernie Bovio, president of UNC Rex, told The News & Observer. "Our staff is tired, both physically and mentally, but they continue to go above and beyond in caring for our patients each and every day. We want to make sure our teammates have the resources and support they need during these challenging times."

The new hospital will have 50 acute-care beds, a 24-bed emergency department, operating rooms and a maternity center. More than 400 people will work at UNC Rex Holly Springs when it opens, including 40 percent of staff who will transfer from Raleigh to Holly Springs.

UNC Rex said in addition to postponing the grand opening, it was forced to reschedule some nonemergent surgeries and procedures to boost capacity to treat COVID-19 patients.

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