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California COVID-19 Cases Foreshadow Hospital Stress

Christa Jones, a nurse in the Sharp Grossmont Hospital intensive care unit, t...

Photo by Zoë Meyers / inewsource

Above: Christa Jones, a nurse in the Sharp Grossmont Hospital intensive care unit, takes a moment to comfort a COVID-19 patient. April 20, 2020.

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As the holidays approach, hospitals throughout California are bracing for rising COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations.

Aired: November 25, 2020 | Transcript

The rise of COVID-19 cases in San Diego is part of a pattern being seen statewide and that might mean a strain on the health care system in the coming weeks.

“When you see the numbers more than double in just under three weeks, we’re concerned,” Dr. Mark Ghaly, California's Secretary of Health and Human Services, said in his California COVID-19 update Tuesday.

Tuesday, there are over 15,000 cases statewide. Over the last 14 days, COVID-19 hospitalizations have increased by 81% statewide, placing over 5,800 Californians in hospital care.

ICU hospitalizations have also increased by 57%. That puts more than 1,300 Californians into intensive care.

“This tells us that we're more than double today and the pressure on our hospitals will continue,” Ghaly said.

RELATED: San Diego County Reports Record 1,546 New COVID-19 Cases

The biggest concern is what the current cases foreshadow for healthcare providers and hospitals.

“We're feeling more and more confident that 12 percent of today's cases end up hospitalized about two to three weeks later," he said.

At Scripps Health, the hospital system is starting to feel the pressure and have already had to transfer patients to different hospitals due to capacity, Scripp's chief medical officer Dr. Ghazala Sharieff said.

“We had to decompress our hospitals in the south. We had two Mercy Chula Vista transfers to La Jolla, two Mercy Chula Vista transfers to Green, “ she said. “So that’s four just out of Chula Vista yesterday. We are starting to feel the volume internally as well. “

Sharieff advises for families to follow CDC guidelines this Thanksgiving to avoid the surge in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations.

Listen to this story by Tania Thorne.

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The rise of COVID-19 cases in San Diego is part of a pattern being seen statewide and that will put increasing strain on the health care system in coming weeks. Meanwhile, San Diego County public health officials reported a record 1,546 COVID-19 infections Tuesday, along with 16 additional deaths. Also, as the pandemic rages, teachers are struggling to get time ... Read more →

Aired: November 25, 2020 | Transcript

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Photo of Tania Thorne

Tania Thorne
North County Reporter

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