For 2nd week, health leaders report lower COVID-19 case count
JACKSON, Tenn. — Local health leaders gave an update on the battle against COVID-19.
Months into the pandemic, West Tennessee Healthcare is still making sure its healthcare workers, nurses, doctors, and patients are staying safe.
During a Zoom interview, Chief Compliance and Communications Officer Amy Garner reported that cases in the area have decreased, saying COVID reports show 40 new cases on Friday, when just last month it was three times more than that.
“Very happy to report that our numbers have continued to decline over the last week. We’ve seen a decrease in hospitalizations in all of our hospitals, not just in Jackson,” Garner said.
In the beginning of the pandemic, hospitals were having to purchase additional ventilators for patients, especially in December of 2020. Fast forward to now, Garner says due to declining cases, they have not had the need to purchase additional ventilators.
“When we hit that peak where we had 60 something people on a ventilator, that was pushing it for us, so we did purchase additional ventilators and at that point our number actually started declining, so we’ve not had to purchase additional [ventilators] since then,” Garner said. “We are definitely prepared if we do have a spike in cases again.”
Garner also says there were concerns about the winter season bringing the flu, adding to COVID-19 cases.
“Because typically this is the time of year where we see flu cases and other respiratory illnesses in the hospitals, but our flu numbers have declined, and a lot of that has to do with wearing masks, social distancing, hand hygiene,” Garner said.
She says that COVID-19 vaccinations for healthcare workers and others has also been a huge improvement in combating the virus.
Garner says they’ll continue to monitor if there is a spike in cases for West Tennessee.