ST. GEORGE, Utah (ABC4) – Intermountain Healthcare’s St. George Regional Hospital is at capacity and healthcare workers say most of their patients hospitalized or in the ICU are unvaccinated. With rising concerns that crisis care could come soon, doctors may have to pick and choose which patients get care.
That hasn’t happened yet, hospital officials say.
“We have not needed to do that in terms of choosing who gets a ventilator and who doesn’t get a ventilator, we haven’t had to take someone off of a ventilator so someone else can get it, we are limiting elective procedures requiring hospitalizations,” says Dr. Patrick Carroll, the hospital medical director, to ABC4.
Dr. Carroll says the hospital is turning down patient transfers from other locations due to a lack of staff and beds.
“We’ve never had to do that in the history of the hospital before this time, and that’s something that we’re now having to do because we simply don’t have the beds, we don’t have the staff in the ICU to care for patients and transfer them in,” he says.
According to Dr. Carroll, the majority of patients in the hospital who are unvaccinated have immunocompromised health conditions. He is pleading for residents to get immunized.
“I am unaware of any patient, in St. George Regional Hospital that has died from a vaccine complication,” he says.
Amid the Delta Variant surge, doctors say they are also seeing more healthy, young, or pregnant people who are unvaccinated get sick with COVID-19.