Caregivers, hospital leaders worry amid Omicron surge in Utah

Local News

ST. GEORGE, Utah (ABC4) – “Everybody has heard of coronavirus, everybody has heard of COVID, everybody has heard of COVID-19 and I think many people would like to not hear those terms any longer and to forget those terms so we can get to where life was two years ago and that’s simply not where we’re at right now,” says Dr. Patrick Carroll, the Medical Director for Intermountain Healthcare’s St. George Regional Hospital.

As record positive COVID-19 cases plague the state, Southern Utah’s rate of infection is also rising. Last week, over 1,700 people tested positive, this week, it’s over 3,000.

“We are seeing a higher amount of individuals that have been vaccinated, particularly those who haven’t received a booster that are having breakthrough cases,” says Dr. Carroll.

Carroll says they’re one tier away from being in full crisis mode. Dr. Brandon Webb, a Disease Specialist for Intermountain says treatment options for the virus is limited and he worries hospitals may not be able to fully treat all COVID-19 patients.

“When we have limited resources for treatment, either based on treatment options or availability of those tool, prevention becomes even that much more important,” he says.

He says the majority of hospitalizations they’re seeing, could have been prevented by taking CDC suggested precautions and through vaccination.

“For those who haven’t received a booster, go ahead and get the booster shot, for those that have been on the fence with vaccination, go ahead and start that series so you can protect your friends and your family,” he says.

Carroll says according to the hospital’s projections, the peak of this surge may happen near the end of the month.

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