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Hospitals in Pueblo overwhelmed, delaying certain surgeries

Both Parkview and St. Mary-Corwin in Pueblo are facing bed shortages
Posted at 10:46 PM, Oct 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-05 08:15:18-04

PUEBLO — Parkview Medical Center announced certain non-life threatening surgeries will be delayed, while they battle a bed shortage and COVID-19 cases continue rising throuhgout Pueblo County.

In a press release on Monday, the hospital saying they will be "monitoring elective procedure and staffing closely".

"It's not an easy decision because, although the term is 'elective' it's still a procedure or a health condition that folks might need taken a look at and need attention, and so it's unfortunate that we have to close some of those operations down," said Racheal Morris, Public Relations for Parkview Medical Center.

Morris says the nationwide staffing shortage is also impacting the hospital.

Morris say their deadline for employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 is November 1, 2021.

As of now, roughly 20% of the staff still needs to be vaccinated. If they do not receive the vaccine or an exemption, the employee will be terminated.

"We are the primary medical provider for the community and so if we have to cut back services dramatically, that will be unfortunate for our community members," said Morris.

St. Mary Corwin Hospital has already been delaying elective procedures.

"Surgery requires planning and it takes time, so in order to facilitate those patients and the patient needs, we have to look ahead and we have to anticipate where we are today with respect to beds and needs for beds going forward," said Michael Cafasso, CEO of the hospital.

Both facilities saying many non-covid related patients in need of immediate care are coming in daily.

"The patients that are here, with or without COVID seem to be very sick and seem to be in need of hospital beds right now," said Cafasso.

Parkview will be continuing their outpatient care, emergency services and women services as usual.

Between September 16 and September 29, Pueblo County saw 805 COVID-19 cases.