“We’re feeling the surge now’: Bryan Health officials say they’re ready for increase in COVID-19 patients
Bryan Health officials say they're ready to handle an increase in COVID-19 patients, and say that increase may have arrived.
Bryan Health officials say they’re ready to handle an increase in COVID-19 patients, and say that increase may have arrived.
“I think we’re feeling the surge now,” said Bob Ravenscroft, vice president of advancement at Bryan Health.
Bryan reported 14 in-house patients Wednesday – its highest number at one time to date. Four people are ventilators and six are in the ICU. As of Wednesday morning, city officials had reported 161 total cases in Lincoln.
“This is part of that surge we thought would occur,” said John Woodrich, CEO of Bryan Medical Center.
Woodrich says he thinks the increase in patients coincides with increased testing capacity. He said models change daily, but expects the peak for Lincoln to hit around May 11.
From a ventilator standpoint, Woodrich says Bryan is using less than what the models have projected. He says he thinks that’s due to proactive measures being taken and quickly identifying cases.
“I think what we’re seeing is a good sign from the aspect that the number of severely ill people are not as high as the model is showing of what has been experienced in other parts of the country,” he said.
Even with a spike in cases in nearby Crete, Bryan officials say they they’re “pretty confident” they can handle the surge, but cautioned that’s mostly because people in the area continue to follow guidelines. A large breakout could quickly shift things in a bad direction.
Bryan officials said a majority of patients continue to be tested at their drive-thru clinic, with 147 of their 254 positive cases being identified at that location. Only 52 have been identified at Bryan hospitals, with the rest coming from their walk-up urgent care clinic and mobile testing unit.
Woodrich says morale among physicians is great, and Ravenscroft said some Bryan employees currently working from home have expressed a desire to be on the frontlines.
Of the patients who have been hospitalized to date, Woodrich says most have had underlying conditions. Woodrich says they continue to see “good outcomes” with most patients, for which he credits early detection and proper intervention when necessary.
“We have a number of these people that are recovering and going home and living normal lives again,” he said.