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Regional News

Washington's largest hospitals guarantee space for sickest Covid patients

Ferry County Hospital in winter
Ferry County Public Hospital District
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Hospital occupancy rates for Covid patients continues to increase

Covid hospitalization rates continue to climb in Washington.

The state reports about 23-hundred Covid-positive people are currently receiving care. That’s up about 500 over the past week. The state hospital association says another 150 hospitalized patients are suspected but not confirmed to be carrying the virus.

Rural hospitals sometimes strike out when they look for larger facilities where they can transfer their most seriously ill patients. The Washington Medical Coordination Center’s director, Mark Taylor, says a handful of hospitals, including Spokane’s Sacred Heart and Deaconess, have agreed that, for now, they’ll guarantee space for extreme cases.

“Even though hospitals and hospital systems are extremely high occupancy, they’re going to make room for one more at these resource facilities to accommodate that patient care that is needed immediately and must be done expeditiously in order to care for these very critical patients," he said.

The state hospital association says the number of Covid patients on ventilators has steadily increased this week.