St. Charles issues plea for COVID precautions; hospitalizations jump

St. Charles on Friday issued an urgent public plea to maintain social distancing, wear masks, and take extra precautions this holiday weekend as the number of COVID hospitalizations increases.

Chief Physician Executive Jeff Absalon said 11 patients are currently being treated on-site for the coronavirus; up from just six a day before. Two are in the ICU and one is on a ventilator.

Absalon said they have enough ICU beds and protective gear at the moment, but the upward trend is disturbing and could force changes in hospital services if it continues.

COVID cases have gone up for five straight weeks in Oregon.

More than 1,300 cases reported this week alone bringing the state total to 9,636.

In Deschutes County, the OHA has reported 54 cases since the middle of June.

Absalon said they have canceled some elective surgeries recently because of the local surge in patients.

And they were able to learn valuable lessons back in April when there was also a rush of COVID patients.

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