KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Hospital and political leaders are calling for the public to take more responsibility to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
On Wednesday, doctors from seven health care institutions said the public needs to wear masks both indoors and outdoors, and avoid gatherings of more than ten people.
A couple of weeks ago Kansas, had a 9.9 percent positive rate, it is now 16 percent. Missouri, isn’t far behind, it has a 13.4 percent positive test rate. If it is higher than 10 percent, it is considered to be a hot spot.
Dr. Steven Stites, the Chief medical officer at the University of Kansas Hospital says too many people have what he calls COWS, or COVID Weariness Syndrome.
“We have not been New York, but don’t think that we are not stressed at a hospital level by the impact of covid right now,” Dr. Stites said. “What will that do to us if we have a big rise as schools reopen, universities reopen, or people start relaxing too soon?”
Hospitals are considered coronavirus hotspots because of the high concentration of patients, yet the disease is not spreading inside hospitals.
Dr. Mark Steele says Truman Medical Center has had to hold some patients in the emergency room until bed space is available because 10 percent of its patients have COVID-19.
Meanwhile at KU hospital, there are 60 patients who are being treated or are recovering from COVID-19. Between eight and eleven new COVID-19 patients are admitted every day, that’s not only three times higher than the number in June, but it’s higher than it’s ever been.
KU Hospital has 800 beds for all medical problems and doctors say now, they are always full.
That’s why doctors are calling for people to wear masks, both indoors and outdoors, practice good hygiene, and avoid large gatherings. Dr. Stites says he would not attend the Chiefs home opener on Sept. 10 against the Houston Texans.
In Lawrence, a mask mandate and public health order to shut down bars and taverns has helped knock down a spike in cases, but now the return of students has the virus circulating again.