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Hospitals across Finger Lakes, Central New York struggling to stay below maximum capacity

Hospitals in Central New York are reporting to the state that they have very little open capacity just weeks after the holiday season. Central New York hospitals have seen their usual case spike after the holiday season. But this time of year it is coming on top of a triple demic of respiratory viruses that already had hospital beds full leading the state to lack capacity.

Yuri Pashchuk of St. Joseph’s Hospital says that “We are at capacity and at many times we are over capacity and have resorted to using non-traditional clinical spaces to try and accommodate the volumes.” Pashchuk also said that the emergency room is quite busy right now as they are most constantly seeing cases of COVID-19 and Flu—with R-S-V dropping off from its peak levels.

The data reported to the state shows the hospital with no open beds and only a couple of I-C-U beds available. Over at Upstate Hospital, they have been seeing stomach bug symptoms as well as chest pains and shortness of breath. “Our hold times vary it really depends on what you are coming in with,” Pashchuk continues by saying, “it depends on what you want to be seen with as well as during times of day that will vary.”

Upstate told us they removed their wait time clock from the site because it was showing inaccurate times and is being updated. St. Joseph’s Hospital doesn’t show wait time on its website at all as they claim they fear this would discourage patients from getting help.

“We don’t have anything and that is something we’ve discussed but again we want to make sure that we are available for anyone who needs this level of care and we never want to deter anyone from seeking healthcare based on a very objective number that doesn’t always tell the whole picture,” says Pashchuk.

St. Josephs is encouraging patients to reach out to their primary care providers to help determine whether an emergency room visit is needed.