Sky Lakes Medical Center requests extra help from state amid staff shortage, increase in patients

KLAMATH COUNTY, Ore — Sky Lakes Medical Center sent a request to the state for extra help, as it continues to deal with staffing shortages and a nearly full hospital.

As of Thursday, 16 people are hospitalized and one patient is in the Intensive Care Unit with COVID-19. Sky Lakes says many of its staff members are also out sick with COVID – causing more of a strain.

Tom Hottman, Public Information Officer with Sky Lakes, also noted the hospital is mostly full with some patients there for non COVID reasons.

Officials say the number of hospitalizations have been going down over the past few weeks, though projections aren’t promising.

“Although the COVID-positive patients in house right now is fairly moderate, it’s still more than we had a few weeks ago,” Hottman said. “We know that by modeling, there’s going to be a whole lot more and we want to be ready for it.”

Back in late August, the influx of COVID patients forced Sky Lakes to open a second COVID isolation unit.

RELATED: Sky Lakes Medical Center opens second COVID-19 isolation unit

While the status of its request is currently unknown, Hottman is expecting dozens of out-of-state nurses to start next week.

Anthony Carter is a reporter for NBC5 News. He grew up in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and graduated from Elizabethtown College in 2019. Anthony started his career as a print journalist, covering New York sports and the NBA Draft. He then started his own sports podcast and website covering the Arena Football League. Anthony moved to the Rogue Valley in 2019 as a news producer before joining the NBC5 News family. Anthony likes to workout at the gym, play basketball, and root for his Atlanta Hawks and New York Jets. Want to connect with Anthony? send him an email: [email protected]
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