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Logansport Memorial Hospital Expects COVID-19 Cases To Peak Next Week

Logansport Memorial Hospital

(Seth Tackett, WTIU/WFIU News)

Cass County, which confirmed over 700 new coronavirus infections last weekend, is expected to see case numbers continue to increase into next week, according to Logansport Memorial Hospital CEO Perry Gay.

READ MORE: Logansport, Cass Co. Tighten Restrictions As COVID-19 Cases Surpass 1,000

Logansport Memorial participated in a study last month that estimated when different regions might hit their coronavirus peaks.

“Our peak at that point (a month ago) was looking at about May 3,” Gay says. “So at that point, we were thinking we’re doing pretty good because (we didn’t) think we’re ever going to reach our peak. Now, it seems like we’re actually going to pretty much hit that number. If I had to guess I would say that the beginning of next week is when we would hit our peak.”

The largely rural county has 1,125 confirmed cases of COVID-19, third-most in the state. It has reported three deaths so far.

Last week, the Tyson meatpacking plant in Logansport announced it would temporarily shut down operations and have all of its 2,200 workers undergo coronavirus testing after over 140 employees there tested positive for COVID-19.

At a news conference on Monday, Gay said staff and administrators have been preparing for weeks for a surge in cases but could still end up being overwhelmed. If the case load becomes too much, patients could end up being transferred to nearby hospitals.

“Worst case scenario for us is if a very, very large percentage of the over 1,000 cases we have need hospitalization,” he says. “Even in that case, we would utilize those partnerships that we have with the tertiary hospitals and send a lot of those patients to them.”

Logansport Memorial has 83 total beds. The COVID-19 unit has nine rooms – all of which are currently in use – with the capacity for 13 beds. The hospital has another intensive care unit with six beds that could be used for COVID-19 patients, bringing the total available beds to around 19.

Gay says other floors can be turned into coronavirus units as a last resort and the hospital has “around a dozen” ventilators.

“Now when I say ‘around,’ you would think that we would have a definitive number,” he says. “But there are some other ways that we can utilize maybe anesthesia machines to serve as vents should we get into a critical point. But we have right now, standard ventilators – eight – and then we can go up to 12 with the repurposing of anesthesia machines.”

Logansport Memorial Hospital remains open for non COVID-19 cases.

“Our ER is open,” Gay says. “We're taking care of all the patients just like we would three months ago. We just have an influx of COVID on a daily basis now.”

For the latest news and resources about COVID-19, bookmark our Coronavirus In Indiana page here

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