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SRMC preparing for possible surge

SALEM — Ohio Department of Health Director Dr. Amy Acton praised local hospitals dealing with an increase in coronavirus patients, including Salem Regional Medical Center and East Liverpool City Hospital.

The reference was made during Monday’s televised press conference with Gov. Mike DeWine, who mentioned an outbreak at the federal prison in Elkton.

Acton also referred to the federal prison outbreak and said “those on the front line have being doing an outstanding job.”

She talked about a call made and specifically mentioned hospitals responding on the front lines, talking about Salem Regional Medical Center, East Liverpool City Hospital, Trumbull and Mercy.

“Those folks have performed admirably,” she said, adding that she had the “privilege of listening to the docs on the front line.”

When asked Monday afternoon about the increase, SRMC President/CEO Anita Hackstedde, M.D. responded in writing, saying “We have had an influx of patients with COVID-like symptoms over the weekend and through today.”

She also responded to the hospital being mentioned by Acton.

“Our Incident Command team, physicians and staff have been working tirelessly around-the-clock to prepare for a surge of patients, and we are doing our utmost to protect our patients and staff. I am so very proud of our SRMC team’s overall commitment, knowledge and professionalism as we fight this battle together and stand SRMC Strong for our communities.”

She said the hospital has been preparing for when a surge in patients occurs.

“We have diligently been working for weeks to maximize and reconfigure our current facility space and resources to accommodate a potential surge of patients. We have expanded our ability to care for critically ill patients and have created designated overflow areas,” she said.

“Beyond our 10-bed ICU, we have added 10 more beds in our Surgical Pre-Care unit and 16 beds in our Endoscopy unit. This reconfiguration of our facility flexes our capacity to care for more patients and we are also looking at other options to expand our internal capacity, such as evaluating the option of adding more beds on the patient tower if needed,” Hackstedde said.

mgreier@salemnews.net

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