As hospitals face capacity constraints – including firing thousands of workers who refuse to comply with Biden’s illegal directive and get jabbed – amid a COVID-19 surge, some states have enlisted the National Guard to help staff healthcare facilities, Becker’s Hospital Review reported on December 10.
Indianapolis-based Indiana University Health, the state’s largest hospital system, announced Dec. 9 it requested assistance from the National Guard for most of its hospitals (except Riley Children’s Hospital). New daily COVID-19 hospitalizations in Indiana have climbed 47% over the last two weeks, according to data tracked by The New York Times.
“As COVID cases continue to increase and hospitalization of COVID and non-COVID patients reach all-time highs, the demand and strain on IU Health’s team members, nurses and providers has never been greater,” IU Health said in a statement shared with Becker’s, “To best support our team members and patients, IU Health will leverage all available resources and enlist members of Indiana’s National Guard, in conjunction with the Indiana Department of Health, to assist in areas of critical need.”
Six-person National Guard teams with clinical and nonclinical members, will deploy to IU Health hospitals in two-week increments.
In Maine, Gov. Janet Mills announced Dec. 8 that she activated up to 75 additional members of the state National Guard. She said they would be used in nonclinical support roles to expand capacity at healthcare facilities.
Joel Botler, MD, CMO of Portland-based Maine Medical Center, said in a statement Dec. 8 that the state’s largest hospital at times this week “has had no critical care beds available.” He said the hospital had to close six more operating rooms, in addition to six that were already closed, to free up workers to provide care and create more bed space. About half of surgeries at Maine Medical Center were being rescheduled.
Seventy National Guard members will be deployed in New Hampshire within the next few weeks to provide nonclinical support at hospitals, The New York Times reported Dec. 9. The newspaper reported that Gov. Chris Sununu also said at a news conference that the Federal Emergency Management Agency was sending a 24-person team to help the facilities.
New York Gov. Kathy Hochul announced this month that 120 National Guard troops would be deployed to overburdened nursing homes.
New York officials also announced Dec. 6 that the state would require 32 hospitals with limited capacity to halt nonurgent procedures as COVID-19 cases increase in the state. The state defined limited capacity as below 10 percent staffed bed capacity, or as determined by the health department based on regional and healthcare utilization factors.
New daily COVID-19 hospitalizations in the state have climbed 33 percent over the last two weeks, according to data tracked by The New York Times.