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Spectrum Well being group members have been on the entrance strains within the battle towards COVID-19 for 2 years. (Taylor Ballek | Spectrum Well being Beat)

Whereas the variety of sufferers with COVID-19 at Spectrum Well being stays excessive—about 400 as of late January—there has not been a major rise in admissions over the previous few weeks.

And that’s excellent news.

There has, nonetheless, been a rise in youngsters hospitalized with COVID-19 at Spectrum Well being Helen DeVos Kids’s Hospital.

Spectrum Well being West Michigan President Darryl Elmouchi, MD, MBA, talked just lately about what he’s seeing proper now—and shared some hope for what he sees on the horizon.

Q: What do hospitalizations seem like proper now?

Most Spectrum Well being groups are in a holding sample proper now. Hospital census has been excessive for months, however it plateaued over the previous few weeks.

“The excellent news, that quantity actually hasn’t gone up,” Dr. Elmouchi mentioned. “The difficult information, that quantity actually hasn’t gone down.”

Q: Do you see COVID-19 admissions taking place quickly?

Spectrum Well being continues to see group positivity charges slowly lowering. Scientific leaders hope the numbers will proceed in that path.

“We’re feeling higher and higher every day, as a result of we’ve seen that positivity quantity come down,” Dr. Elmouchi mentioned.

If this development continues, there needs to be fewer admissions within the coming weeks.

Q: What number of youngsters are being hospitalized for COVID-19?

A file variety of youngsters with COVID-19 are being admitted to Helen DeVos Kids’s Hospital—and this has been some of the difficult and irritating components of the omicron surge, Dr. Elmouchi mentioned.

In late January, about 30 youngsters had been being handled at Spectrum Well being on any given day, a lot of them fairly sick.

Previous to omicron, Spectrum Well being handled fewer than 20 youngsters per day for COVID—and sometimes that quantity was within the low teenagers.

“This can be a substantial improve,” he mentioned.

Q: Are youngsters with COVID-19 experiencing different diseases?

Omicron is extraordinarily transmissible and extremely contagious, and there are some youngsters who check optimistic after being admitted to the hospital for a distinct motive.

However most kids hospitalized with COVID-19 proper now are being handled for signs associated to COVID-19, reminiscent of pneumonia. And lots of are fairly sick.

“Nearly all of youngsters admitted with COVID are right here due to COVID,” Dr. Elmouchi mentioned.

Q: Any information on COVID-19 variants and what to anticipate?

The present COVID-19 variant circulating, apart from omicron, is known as BA.1, and there’s additionally a subversion known as BA.2.

Early information exhibits it’s behaving much like omicron.

“Whether or not it is going to be a medical concern past what we’re seeing, most consultants at this level don’t assume so,” Dr. Elmouchi mentioned.

Q: What’s the “Individuals Behind the Masks” marketing campaign?

Spectrum Well being group members have labored to offer care to sufferers all through this pandemic, usually underneath very tough circumstances—a excessive quantity of sufferers, many battling extreme sickness.

“We actually have been at struggle with this pandemic for 2 years,” Dr. Elmouchi mentioned. “Hospital and well being care staff had been on the entrance strains of this struggle. It’s been onerous on everybody.”

The purpose of this marketing campaign is to place a face behind the masks.

“To make individuals understand these are actual individuals caring for you,” he mentioned. “To please take into account that and deal with everybody with respect.”

Q: What can the group do to assist Spectrum Well being group members?

Deal with individuals with respect—and share a smile.

In his follow of drugs, Dr. Elmouchi all the time noticed the grins and thanks-you’s from sufferers as the most effective half.

“Simply understand that individual, even when they’re working a bit of late, is there for you,” he mentioned.



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