Written by Lucas Murawsky (News Writer)
With new strains of Covid-19 popping up all over the country, and hospital capacity to the max, paramedics, and EMTs in some counties are required not to transport people to the hospital who are not likely to live. “This order that was issued by the county emergency medical services really is very specific to patients who suffered from a cardiac arrest and are unable to be revived in the field,” said Dr. Jeffrey Smith, chief operating officer of Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. “Those patients have a very low rate of survival each if they are transported to the hospital. So at this time, it is deemed to likely be futile.”
Almost 7,900 people are hospitalized with Covid-19 in just Los Angeles County. And 21% of them are in intensive care units. On Tuesday, another 224 deaths were announced, bringing the total in the county to more than 11,000. “Hospitals are declaring internal disasters and having to open churches and gyms to serve as hospital units,” Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda Solis said. “Our health care workers are physically and mentally exhausted and sick.” Solis called the situation a “human disaster.”
With 200+ new cases coming in each day just in Santa Cruz County, the Bay Area including Santa Cruz County, have extended the stay-at-home orders. The previous order was supposed to expire on Friday but since the ICU bed capacity is at only 3% the order has been extended until further notice.
President-elect Joe Biden will increase the release of COVID-19 vaccines and send out most of the federal government’s available supply, his transition team said Friday after states are begging for more help in battling a coronavirus surge that is breaking records daily. A statement from Biden says the incoming president “believes the government should stop holding back vaccine supply so we can get more shots in Americans’ arms now.” Nationwide, 21.4 million doses of the vaccine have been given out to states, but only 5.9 million doses have actually been given to people, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The Trump administration is encouraging, giving out coronavirus vaccines to everyone over 65 in the country. Health officials are also expected to give out vaccines to all adults with pre-existing health conditions that make them more likely to develop serious illness from the virus.