As the North Country continues to deal with a surge in COVID-19 cases, one New Hampshire hospital has begun attempting to transfer patients to other facilities in an effort to create more room for people seeking treatment for the virus.
The situation at Androscoggin Valley Hospital in Berlin has been described as “dire” and “life-and-death.” Berlin Fire Chief Jay Watkins, who also serves on the emergency management COVID-19 task force for the valley, said the hospital now has 13 COVID-19 patients, with five in the intensive care unit.
According to Watkins, staff is limited and some have become sick themselves.
Cases in the city of Berlin and surrounding communities have been climbing in recent weeks. Watkins said he feels the situation will only get worse before it gets better.
“We’ve been monitoring other states that mirror New Hampshire and also looking at how the southern part of the state, how the ups and downs have gone for them,” Watkins said. “It’s quite obvious that we’re in the up-rise from COVID. We’re just a little delayed from the southern part of the state.”
The Department of Health and Human services has provided resources to Androscoggin Valley Hospital to help with the surge. That includes more rapid tests and regular oxygen deliveries.
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