Staffing issues create backlog for hospitals

JACKSON COUNTY, Ore. —We’re learning about another issue hospitals are facing with the Omicron wave.

Jackson County Public Health says when it’s time to discharge patients from the hospitals to long-term care facilities, it’s running into trouble with where to send them. Many of those facilities do not have enough staffing.

This results in people remaining in the hospital, creating a backlog of patients taking up space, that could go to someone else in need.

“Even though they might need hospital-level care, they stay in the hospital because we aren’t going to discharge patients inappropriately, then if they are taking up those beds now the ICU gets backed up,” said Dr. O’Keefe.

Dr. O’Keefe, says the problem has been ongoing but is made worse by Covid.

To help combat the problem, she says the state is looking at providing extra staff to these long-term care facilities, and for home health care.

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Jenna King is the 6pm and 11pm anchor for NBC5 News. Jenna is a Burbank, CA native. She graduated from the University of Oregon with a degree in Broadcast Journalism and a minor in Sports Business. During her time at Oregon she was part of the student-run television station, Duck TV. She also grew her passion for sports through her internship with the PAC 12 Network. When Jenna is not in the newsroom you can find her rooting for her hometown Dodgers, exploring the outdoors or binging on the latest Netflix release.
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