COVID-19 surge forces Indiana hospital to divert ambulances for 2nd time in 20 years

Elkhart (Ind.) General Hospital was forced to divert ambulances for only the second time in 20 years amid a surge in COVID-19 patients, reports NBC News. 

The hospital went on diversion for seven hours Nov. 10, after surpassing its 144-bed capacity with 206 patients. Elkhart General houses one of only two emergency rooms in Indiana's Elkhart County. Goshen (Ind.) Hospital houses the second, which is about a 30-minute drive away. 

"That's not something we take lightly, and we rarely have had to do that," Michelle Bache, MD, vice president of medical affairs at Elkhart General, told NBC News of the diversion. 

The situation at Elkhart General is not unique — the nationwide surge in COVID-19 cases has forced many other hospitals to divert ambulances, according to the American Hospital Association. 

"As COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations rise across the country, we have seen and heard anecdotal reports of hospitals having greater difficulty transferring patients and having to go on diversion due to capacity and staffing issues," an AHA spokesperson told NBC News.

To view the full article, click here.

More articles on patient flow:
Nationwide Children's admitting adults as other hospitals fill with COVID-19 patients
2 killed in explosion at Connecticut hospital
Renown Health opens COVID-19 care site in parking structure

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