Miss. doctors: Hospitals will be stressed with limited staffing, growing COVID-19 cases

Published: Jan. 7, 2022 at 10:17 PM CST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

JACKSON, Miss. (WMC) - With limited staff and growing case numbers, Mississippi is concerned that extra stress is about to be put on the state’s hospitals.

As of Thursday,1,034 people were in Mississippi hospitals with COVID-19. That is a 64 percent increase from a week ago when there were 620 patients.

However, the case-to-hospitalization ratio is lower now than during the delta surge when about seven percent of reported cases ended up in a hospital.

Now, that number is between two to three percent.

“We’ll still see some pressure on the hospital systems just from the vast number of cases of omicron we’ll see in the next few weeks,” Mississippi State Epidemiologist Dr. Paul Byers said.

Thursday, 6,774 new cases were reported in the Magnolia State.

Friday, the state explained there are certain things it cannot rely on during this surge, including staffing help. As of Friday, 11 ICU beds were reported open in hospitals across the state. Many are left empty because there aren’t enough people to staff the beds.

“Resources are tight throughout the country, staffing resources, especially in nursing,” Jim Craig, the Mississippi Department of Health’s director of health protection. “I don’t know if we’re going to be able to draw in the type of staffing help we saw in delta from anywhere in the country, now including some of these federal resources.”

There are 188 patients in Mississippi ICU facilities, including four pediatric cases.

Health leaders said the unvaccinated continue to be the most impacted by this variant.

“More than 70 percent of our deaths over the last month have been in unvaccinated or partially vaccinated individuals,” Dr. Byers said.

Dr. Byers added only 2 percent of recent deaths due to COVID-19 have been in patients with booster shots. Doctors said if you’re eligible get your booster shot.

You can find vaccination locations across the Mid-South here.

Copyright 2022 WMC. All rights reserved.

Click here to sign up for our newsletter!

Click here to report a spelling or grammar error. Please include the headline.