Idaho doctors are calling on residents to get the COVID-19 vaccine


Health officials have warned the public that hospitals may reach their limits, coupled with the surge in COVID-19 cases again and the growing demand for inpatient care.

Due to limited testing capabilities, Idaho medical professionals are still uncertain about the consequences of the highly contagious delta mutation in the recent increase in cases. However, they know that numbers are heading in the wrong direction, and that the COVID-19 vaccine is effective in preventing infections, serious cases, and death.

Dr. James Sousa, the doctor in charge of St. Luke, said the hospital was “burst at the seams” due to the surge in hospitalizations of all kinds, including COVID-19.

Message to the general public at Souza: “Get the vaccine, get the vaccine, get the vaccine.”

“The overwhelming majority of (COVID-19) patients remain in the unvaccinated cohort to this day, which is really unnecessary,” Souza told Idaho Statesman Wednesday. “It’s unnecessary suffering and unnecessary death, and that’s the message we have to send.”

COVID-19 vaccine is effective, state and hospital data

According to Souza, vaccinated individuals infected with COVID-19, the so-called breakthrough cases, are usually mild cases. The idea that they indicate that the vaccine does not work “could not be far from the truth,” Souza said.

“Police officers and soldiers can wear bulletproof vests, take bullets and survive them so they can do their jobs,” Souza said. “Patients who have breached the vaccine have a cold. They have not been hospitalized and are certainly not in the ICU.”

According to the Idaho Ministry of Health, almost 100% of deaths in Idaho have been due to unvaccinated patients since January. The average age of people hospitalized with COVID-19 has also dropped from about 69 in January to 56 recently, Souza said. We believe this speaks to the success of the vaccine among the elderly.

In Idaho, 77% of people over the age of 65 have been vaccinated with the COVID-19 vaccine at least once as of Tuesday. Depending on the condition.. Only 42% between the ages of 12 and 64 receive at least one dose.

Hospitals suffering from growing demand for inpatient care

During the last major surge in COVID-19 cases, in December and January, hospitals focused solely on the coronavirus, Souza said. But this time, along with the virus, patients are hospitalized for all sorts of problems.

“That’s all,” Souza said. “It’s a diagnosis of stroke, heart attack, and new infections, and new cancers.”

Souza believes that several factors may be involved. Due to the surge in COVID-19 pandemics, patients hesitated to go to the hospital to treat their condition, and the demand for inpatient treatment is now increasing.

Behavioral health problems, and substance use, also lead to poor management of other chronic conditions. He also said there was also the question of whether COVID-19 would worsen other health conditions.

In St. Luke’s, COVID-19 hospitalizations increased from 5% two weeks ago to 10% this week, Sousa said. He added that further increases could cause problems with the health system.

The number of COVID-19 ICU patients Doubled from the beginning of this monthSaid Dave Jeppesen, director of the Ministry of Health. The positive rate of the test went from 2.8% four weeks ago to 4.3% in the week ending July 11. In addition, the 7-day moving average has exceeded 146 per day by last Friday, from less than 50 new cases per day on July 5.

On Tuesday, Aidaho had the largest number of new cases (245) per day since late April. Over 70 of those cases were in Ada County.

“This is really a pandemic for unvaccinated people,” Jeppesen said on Tuesday.

Increasing cases of COVID-19 contribute to mandatory vaccines in St. Roox

Two of Idaho’s largest medical systems, St. Luke’s and St. Alphonsus, announced earlier this month that they would require employees to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. The primary health care provider, the Primary Health Medical Group, also said it would require workers to be vaccinated. This adds a shot of the virus to the list of immunizations required to function in all these medical systems.

since then, Hundreds of people protested In front of the Idaho State Capitol and the hospital. Lieutenant Janice McGeachin held a press conference on the mission and urged the Idaho Legislature to reconvene to ban vaccination requirements by private employers.

“The problem here today is not the effectiveness of the vaccine,” McGeetin said at a press conference last week. “The immediate problem is personal freedom and freedom. Those who make their personal medical choice not to take this vaccine deserve to respect their decision.”

Sousa said the decision to require employees to receive the COVID-19 vaccine was linked to a surge in COVID-19 cases. Health officials have learned a lot from the waves of the last three incidents and said, “I don’t want to see other employees die in this completely preventable event.”

“The true north of that decision was patient safety and public safety,” says Souza. “We have very vulnerable and weakened people coming to our facility, and it’s often shown that pandemics cause infectious events in hospitals. We don’t. So, we have a duty to do everything we can and have power. “

For St. Luke’s and other healthcare systems in Idaho, Emergency response plan for distribution care For when the hospital is approaching capacity, whether it’s an ICU bed or staffing restrictions.In the past, hospitals across the United States closed doors To selective treatment And we shifted our workforce to focus more on acute care.

“We really don’t have to activate them,” Souza said. “It only exacerbates this problem of health in our community and is a disgusting request that we have allowed it to occur in the first three waves.”