Missouri health system reaches 'sad new record' of COVID-19 patients, CEO says

CoxHealth had 168 COVID-19 positive inpatients as of July 30. On July 31, the Springfield, Mo.-based system had 180, a new record during the pandemic, and as of Aug. 1, the number climbed even higher to 187, according to Steve Edwards, CoxHealth's president and CEO.

"One hundred eighty-seven Covid positive patients at CoxHealth this morning," Mr. Edwards tweeted Aug. 1. "A sad new record, breaking the record of the day before."

"Please consider vaccinating as a civic responsibility-to protect others, to protect children, to protect our community," he wrote.

The six-hospital system has seen its COVID-19 census grow in recent weeks and grappled with nurse staffing as a rise in cases hit southwestern Missouri.

Although new COVID-19 cases in Missouri's Greene County have declined 19 percent compared to the seven days prior, the county is reporting a seven-day rolling average of 181 new cases, numbers comparable to the COVID-19 surge in southwestern Missouri last winter, KY3 reported.

Mr. Edwards projects CoxHealth is preparing for the possibility of reaching more than 200 COVID-19 positive inpatients, "but at this point our projections call for leveling about where we are," according to the news station.

On July 14, the Springfield-Greene County Health Department and the Springfield-Greene County Office of Emergency Management in Missouri requested state funding for a COVID-19 alternative care site amid a rise in severe cases. However, county officials have withdrawn that request.

Read the full KY3 report here.

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