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New York Times

Michigan’s COVID ward is full of young patients

Royal Oak, Michigan — At the Royal Oak Beaumont Hospital, one of the worst coronavirus hotspots in the United States, the entire unit is still filled with COVID-19 patients. People who are vulnerable to the virus are still struggling to sit in bed. And the phone still rings with a plea to transfer the dying patient to a unit with more high-tech equipment. But unlike previous surges, Michigan hospital beds now occupy most of the beds in young, middle-aged adults, not parents or grandparents. A 37-year-old woman wearing a ventilator after giving birth. 41-year-old father. A 55-year-old car worker who has been ill for weeks. Alexandra Budnick, an intensive care nurse working in a unit with a missing life-saving machine or circuit, said: “Every time I get a call or hear that I have a 40-year-old kid without a circuit, I can’t save everything.” Sign up for the morning newsletter from the New York Times throughout Michigan. It is experiencing the most dangerous outbreaks in the country, with more young people being hospitalized with the coronavirus than at any other time in the pandemic. According to the Michigan State Hospital Association, Michigan hospitals are currently accepting coronavirus patients in their 30s and 40s, about twice as much as during peak fall. Vital changes are due to the fact that the majority of Michigan residents over the age of 65 are fully vaccinated, significantly reducing the risk to the most vulnerable. However, vaccination of the elderly does not explain the increased hospitalization of people under the age of 60, including those in their 20s and 30s. According to public health experts, this outbreak is caused by a more contagious, more serious variant of the virus, B.1.1.7, and is spreading rapidly to the younger age group. And throughout the state, doctors and nurses are reporting an increasing trend of concern: younger patients are coming more often with serious cases of COVID-19. Dr. Erin Brennan, a doctor in the Detroit emergency room, said: The B.1.1.7 variant was first identified in the United Kingdom and is now considered the most common new source of infection in the United States, about 60% more contagious and deadly than the original coronavirus. It is believed that there is. A federal estimate of COVID-19 admissions based on samples from 14 counties, including Michigan, showed that more patients between the ages of 18 and 49 were admitted in mid-April than those aged 65 and over. The number of patients over the age of 65 is more than double that of the younger group, with significant differences. Dr. Rochelle Warrensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, warned this month that there will be “more and more” cases of young adults with severe illness in hospitals, with recent CDC data in their 20s and 30s. Shows adults in their 40s and 40s. And the 50s have helped promote recent COVID-19 hospitalizations in the Midwest, South, and Northwest. From Minnesota to New Jersey to North Carolina, young people are increasing their hospitalization rates. Public health experts point out many factors in vital changes, such as vaccination of the elderly. Pandemic restrictions have been relaxed nationwide, making young people out and sociable and a workforce when only one-third of American adults are fully vaccinated. .. “The limit was our pause button,” said Jennifer Nuzzo, a public health researcher at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. “As soon as you press regenerate, you can see the virus come back as soon as possible.” In many parts of the country, the number of cases has dropped sharply, and the number of hospitalized patients nationwide is half of the peak in winter. Some medical experts said it is believed that more young people are being hospitalized because the hospitalization standards have been lowered in some hospitals because of the following: .. “That’s one explanation you have to think about,” said Dr. Amesh Adalja, an infectious disease specialist and hospital doctor in the Pittsburgh area. “When you’re not worried about hospital capacity, you’re accepting lower standards.” But in Beaumont, Royal Oak, a suburb of Detroit, where the number of cases remains high, doctors haven’t lowered their standards of hospitalization. .. The young people who took care of them often had less chronic health problems and were more likely to recover, but showed serious symptoms that required immediate intervention. “Some of them have children younger than my child. You think about these people and the family situation if they don’t survive,” said Dr. Felicia Ibask, who said she was in the hospital Corona. The virus patient was connected to a machine in a glass-enclosed room. The escalating situation in Michigan has disrupted the lives of people like Matthew Kirschner in Clinton Township, north of Detroit. At the end of last month, when the vaccine hadn’t been released to everyone in Michigan, some families tested positive for the virus after hosting a small lunch in his backyard. Kirschner, 36, who transported a COVID-19 patient in his job as a firefighter and survived a virus attack last fall, thought he knew what to expect. Fits the condition and profile of the people most affected by the disease. However, it was his 37-year-old sister, Kara Kirschner Estrada, who ended up in a serious illness. Kirschner Estrada, who was seven months pregnant when she got sick, checked herself into the emergency room this month with a variety of symptoms, including fever, chills, coughing, and dyspnea. The doctor performed an emergency caesarean section and gave birth to a healthy son, Angelo. However, Kirschner Estrada’s condition became unstable. According to her family, she is sedated for Beaumont, Royal Oak, and life support. “It’s shocking. Kirschner’s wife, Lauren, talked about her sister-in-law, who she described as an active young mother working as a nurse at a wellness spa and raising infants.” That’s my point of view. I can’t believe the character. Why is she? ”More than 45,000 people were admitted to the COVID-19 hospital last week. This is well below the winter peak, but up from about 39,000 a month ago. The number of hospitalizations has been almost stagnant for the past week. The risk of hospitalization for young adults remains low. Overall hospitalizations have increased since last month According to state data from Maryland, people in their 30s are 5% more likely to be hospitalized if they learn they are infected with the virus, and are in their 60s. Much less than the 20% chance of someone in. But as more young people become infected, experts say more people will inevitably be admitted to the hospital. Nick Cabrera, 26, from Oxon Hill, Maryland, said he had to stay in the hospital for five days this month to replenish oxygen. For Michigan doctors, the increase in hospitalizations, even if they are familiar, is numb. At Beaumont, Royal Oak, where nearly 200 coronavirus patients were hospitalized on Thursday, doctors discussed an emergency response plan to open more beds for COVID-19 patients as needed. “We were very excited when the vaccine went on sale in December,” said Dr. Barbara Ducatman, hospital’s chief healthcare officer, before guiding staff through a slideshow of disappointing statistics. I told you. “We didn’t want to be here. It’s like déjà vu.” The vaccine has only recently become available to all adults and its deployment has yet to reach many young people. Hmm. In the next corridor of the vast hospital corridor, doctors and nurses wear additional masks to enter the COVID-19 patient’s room and solemnly talk about how people of the same generation are seen in a dire manner. did. “You take it home more,” said intensive care nurse Budnik, 32. “Looking at them, when you think this might be my friend, this might be my sister, this might be me, your thinking is a little different.” Orsora, an infectious disease fellow. Dr. Ogundipe said he noticed that some of his younger patients were emotionally suffering from their condition. “They have a sense of immortality, and I think they will surprise young people,” he said. Reports of new cases in Michigan have only recently begun to decline, but in hospitals where doctors in the emergency room see as many as 10 new coronavirus patients per shift and some of the hospitalized patients stay. , The progress is not yet clear. several weeks. 55-year-old James Dyer, who works at the Ford plant, was just beginning to feel better on Thursday after being hospitalized for three weeks at COVID-19. Dyer said he used to suffer from fierce competition to get the vaccine, but now he is keen on injections. “I definitely encourage others to do that,” Dier said. “And I’ll get it, if possible, before I leave Beaumont.” Not too far away, 53-year-old Eleanor Wilson breathes in a nasty case of COVID-19 in the hospital on the fourth day. I had a hard time walking even a short distance. “We all think we’re superheroes, just as we think we’re okay,” said daycare provider Wilson. “Once you get it, you’re like,’Oh, this isn’t a joke.’ But after a few days and a course of steroids, Wilson got the good news: the doctor allowed her to go home. This article was originally published in The New York Times. © 2021 The New York Times Company

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