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ADPH: COVID hospitalizations are up about 20%

ADPH recently put out statistics showing an increase in COVID-related hospitalizations. Does this mean we could see another surge?

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — Statistics from the Alabama Department of Public Health show that in less than two weeks the number of COVID-related hospitalizations have jumped up about 20%.

"We have 40 inpatients that are COVID positive patients, our peak was close to 270, 280, so that's come down quite a bit, but the numbers are creeping up just a little bit," said Huntsville Hospital's Senior Vice President of Operations, Tracy Doughty.

Doughty explains why he thinks numbers have increased...

"We're all tired of COVID, everybody is. We're naturally social creatures, so people were out and about during spring break, same thing during Easter. Couple that with not having a mask mandate state-wide; we figured we would see a small trend upward. We hope we're at the peak of it now but I think we're doing a great job from a public health perspective and also a community perspective," said Doughty.

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Public health officials said they are monitoring the hike but don't consider it to be a sign of another crisis since more people are getting vaccinated.

Doughty says people should still remain cautious,

"We always worry, that's kind of the nature of our business to be prepared for whatever happens. So, we've got plans in place if we do have a surge, know how to take care of patients, how to do it in a safe manner," said Doughty.

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But that if another surge was to take place, the hospital is more prepared than ever.

"Our physicians are more comfortable with medicine regimens, with ventilator management, all those things that go into taking care of patients. The medical treatments have advanced as well with the monoclonal therapy that we give as well. So, over the last year you know, the clinicians, plus science have both advanced and I think we're in a good place to take care of those patients," said Doughty. 

RELATED: Worldwide COVID-19 death toll tops a staggering 3 million

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — Hospitalizations linked to COVID-19 have jumped about 20% in less than two weeks in Alabama. Statistics from the Alabama Department of Public Health show 362 people were hospitalized Monday for the illness caused by the new coronavirus. That's up from the 301 patients just 10 days earlier. But the total is still just a fraction of the 3,070 patients who pushed the state’s intensive care wards to near capacity in mid-January. Officials said Tuesday they were monitoring the hike but don’t consider it to be a sign of another coming crisis in the pandemic since more people are getting vaccinated and many patients are younger people who tend to recover.