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Upstate Golisano Children’s Hospital over capacity due to RSV

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  • Staff Report 

Upstate Golisano Children’s Hospital is currently over capacity due to the number of children being admitted with RSV.

As the number of cases increases thanks to RSV and other respiratory viruses, the hospital has activated Incident Command. This means everyone there to care for sick children is made available.

The emergency room is constantly filled with pediatric RSV cases and all beds are full. Now the hospital is using overflow areas to help sick kids. According to CNY Central, Chairman of Pediatrics, Dr. Gregory Conners, explained what’s going on.

“Currently, about half of the children in the hospital have RSV or other related conditions and so that has really put a strain on our capacity to care for the children,” Conners said. He added that this isn’t just a local problem, it’s a national problem.

Due to the beds being filled in the hospital, some children are forced to stay in the emergency room until a bed can open up. The hospital is now focusing on increasing the number of doctors, nurses, and specialists to help the increasing number of pediatric patients. At the moment there are 12 children with RSV and respiratory illnesses in the pediatric ICU and 12 more in inpatient beds. Two more children are in the emergency room waiting for a bed.

Babies are especially at risk. Many did not get sick during the pandemic thanks to the safety precautions in place to stop the spread of COVID-19. Now, the babies that would usually have gotten sick with RSV during winter in the last two or three years never did. Highest risk children are younger, born premature, and/or have underlying health conditions.

You can take steps to keep your child safe from contracting the virus this year. First, make sure you clean surfaces well with disinfectant. Avoid large crowds, as well as people you know are sick.

So far Upstate Golisano hasn’t needed to send patients to other hospitals, but they have turned away 74 patients that were referred to them. Those patients were helped by finding other regional hospitals that could take them. Starting on Monday, November 14, After Hours Care will be open longer hours from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday. Hours for Saturday and Sunday will be from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Patients the hospital will see are those from birth to 21 years old.