COVID-19 patients are slowly filling Ohio hospitals

COLUMBUS, Ohio – As the number of coronavirus cases in Ohio continues to rise, so will hospital numbers.

What you need to know

  • Eye on Ohio: Ohio Center for Journalism updates its ongoing list of state hospital bed numbers every week
  • Individual hospitals report their numbers to the state, and the state then sends that information to Eye on Ohio
  • The state reported an increase in the number of patients occupying both Med / Surg beds and ICU beds.

Keeping track of those numbers is Eye on Ohio: Ohio Center for Journalism. Lucia Walinchus is the executive director.

“We see beds with staff here. To be honest, these are the worst numbers we’ve ever seen, ”said Walinchus.

According to the latest statistics, on Aug. 20, the state reported 1,197 Med / Surg beds available. A month earlier, on July 20, there were 2,531 Med / Surg beds available. That is a decrease of more than 1,300 Med / Surg beds.

“Every hospital we spoke to said they have contingency plans to open their beds,” said Walinchus. “At the moment we are still running electoral processes. At some point in the last year we canceled all electoral processes. So when we canceled electoral processes, our capacities have obviously increased significantly and we have never really reached this level.”

In the intensive care unit, COVID-19 intensive care patients made up 12.7% of beds on August 25, almost twice as much as two weeks earlier (7.32%).

Eye on Ohio battled the state for access to the number of available hospital beds and other equipment related to COVID-19. The organization filed a lawsuit in the Court of Claims of Ohio to obtain the requested information.

In November 2020, Judge Patrick M. McGrath ruled that the Ohio Department of Health must provide this data.

Click here to view the latest data from Eye on Ohio.

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