Ohio nurses help governor show how COVID-19 is impacting hospitals


Ohio Governor Mike DeWine used four nurses from around the state to show what's going on in the hospitals

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WKBN) -The focus of the COVID-19 situation across Ohio has shifted to hospitalizations.

For a while, we were talking about cases, how they were going up. But at his COVID briefing Monday, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine used four nurses from around the state to show what’s going on in the hospitals.

Dara Pence, a nurse at Columbus Riverside Hospital, had an idea of where many in the medical profession are headed.

“We are at war. We are at war with this disease, and we are going to have PTSD. We are going to be struggling with this,” Pence said.

In Ohio Monday, there were 5,060 people hospitalized. On November 1, it was 1,685, an increase of 200 percent in 30 days.

The number of people in ICUs is now at 1,180. Two weeks ago it was 898, an increase of 31 percent.

Jamie Giere is a nurse in Troy, Ohio. She says patients are younger, oftentimes in their 30s and 40s. She says their health declines rapidly.

“Comparing our patients now compared to back in March, they are sicker,” Giere said. “We’re seeing healthy individuals come in and they decline so quickly.”

Nurse Stacey Morris, of Akron, says she and other nurses are finding themselves holding iPads for conversations between patients and families.

“Typically, those are private conversations that happen among loved ones, and having to experience that at that level is just really difficult,” Morris said.

Carrie Watkins is a nurse at an assisted living facility in Holland, Ohio, near Toledo. She says they’re doing everything right and can’t keep COVID-19 out.

“Proper use of PPE, staff education, sanitation, all the things you do right. It doesn’t make the virus go away,” Watkins said.

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