BayCare to halt some nonurgent surgeries to make room for COVID-19 patients

Starting July 10, BayCare Health System will begin reducing the number of nonurgent surgeries performed at its Pinellas County hospitals in Florida, to make sure they can accommodate the increasing number of COVID-19 patients.

The Clearwater, Fla.-based health system will implement the temporary policy at St. Anthony's Hospital in St. Petersburg; Morton Plant Hospital in Clearwater; Mease Countryside Hospital in Safety Harbor; and Mease Dunedin Hospital.

Some surgeries that are not medically urgent and require overnight recovery in the hospital may be deferred, but the policy will allow all surgeries for life-threatening situations and many nonurgent procedures to continue.

"This policy will impact far fewer people’s health care than the previous [state] ban this year on all nonurgent surgeries," said Tommy Inzina, BayCare's CEO. "This is really about one key resource that we need to be sure we have available, and that is hospital beds for those battling COVID-19."

The policy does not apply to BayCare's hospitals in Hillsborough, Polk and Pasco counties, but may be adopted if those areas also face lack of hospital beds for COVID-19 care.


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