Hospitals Brace for Omicron

Hospitals across the country are struggling to cope with burnout among doctors, nurses, and other workers, and are now bracing for the fallout of the omicron variant.

Ohio became the latest state to summon the National Guard to help overwhelmed medical facilities.

Nebraska warned that its hospitals soon may need to ration care.

Kansas and Missouri are delaying surgeries, turning away transfers, and desperately trying to hire traveling nurses, as cases double and triple.

The national seven-day average of COVID-19 hospital admissions was 60,000 last week, far off last winter’s peak but 50% higher than in early November.

At AdventHealth Shawnee Mission, chief medical officer Doctor Lisa Hays said the emergency department is experiencing backups sometimes lasting for days.

“The beds are not the issue. It’s the nurses to staff the beds. Our nurses are burnt out,” Hays said.