CentraCare Not Turning Crisis Cases Away Despite High COVID Numbers
CentraCare continues to be at capacity and that includes St. Cloud Hospital this week. CentraCare Spokesman Dr. George Morris joined me on WJON today. He says they have 97 COVID positive patients within CentraCare with 70 at St. Cloud Hospital. St. Cloud Hospital has 25 people in the ICU/Critical Care Unit with most of them on ventilators. Morris says 80% of those hospitalized are unvaccinated with many of those under the age of 50. He says the average age of a hospitalized vaccinated COVID patient is 77. Numbers reported by Dr. Morris last week were similar with 90-plus within CentraCare and 70 at St. Cloud Hospital. ICU numbers were mid-20s.
Dr. Morris says CentraCare has not had to turn people away from crisis care situations. Examples of this include heart attacks, car accidents or various other emergencies. He says they have had to delay care at times due to capacity.
Morris says St. Cloud Hospital normally has 28 ICU/Critical Care beds but has expanded to 42. He says 70% of their ICU/Critical Care unit is being used by COVID-19 patients.
I asked Dr. Morris if there is a benefit to CentraCare if someone is admitted into the Hospital for something other than COVID but tests positive for COVID to list that person as a COVID death if they pass. He says:
"We have not benefitted and we do not do that. I will not allow that and us as an organization will not allow that. I would classify that as false and misleading statements"
Morris says if people are admitted for a car accident for example and they pass away due to a car accident but have also tested positive for COVID, the cause of death will be listed as car accident.
Morris says they do get federal compensation because of the level of care for COVID patients is different. He says they are not being paid to falsify medial information.
If you'd like to listen to my conversation with Dr. Morris it is available below.