McLean County hospitals leaders react to 100% of ICU beds and 99% of total beds being in use

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MCLEAN COUNTY, Ill. (WMBD/WYZZ) — In Thursday’s McLean County Health Department COVID update, McLean County hospitals reported that 100% of ICU beds, and 99% of total beds, are currently in use.

Lynn Fulton, President of OSF St. Joseph Medical Center in Bloomington, said the hospital has been running fairly close to capacity for several weeks now.

She reported that, in the last few days, the number of people being admitted to the hospital has equaled the number of people being discharged. It’s causing concern.

“Today as a hospital president, I am not panicked, however, resources are finite, you know we only have so many physicians, so many nurses, so many technologists, and really only so many physical beds and places to put patients,” said Fulton.

Both Fulton and Colleen Kannaday, the President of Carle BroMenn Medical Center in Normal, stress not every hospital bed is being occupied by someone with COVID-19, but they said getting vaccinated can help them relieve the capacity strain.

“Absolutely those that end up in the ICU are unvaccinated, and what happens is, they end up taking up resources for individuals that might be needing to come in for a heart attack, a stroke, trauma that they may be taking a bed from somewhere throughout the region,” said Kannaday.

And beyond the physical component, they both said the pandemic has taken an emotional toll on their staff.

“Some staff, and even some physicians during this time, when I’ve said ‘how are you doing,’ as I rounded in the ICU, and one of our physicians commented and said ‘you know what, I’m not very good,’ and I said ‘tell me more, what’s going on,’ and this physician said, ‘I’m so tired of people needlessly dying when that doesn’t have to be the case,'” said Kannaday.

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