New COVID unit opening delayed as hospital sees massive spike in patients

Decatur-Morgan Hospital’s ICU is full and they’re seeing nearly as many patients as they did during peak in July

A new COVID-19 unit that was set to open in Decatur is now delayed due to a large spike in hospital

DECATUR, Ala. (WAFF) - Decatur-Morgan Hospital’s ICU is full.

They have more people on ventilators than they’ve had in months and leaders tell WAFF 48 News it’s not slowing down anytime soon.

Two weeks ago, they announced a new COVID-19 unit opening at the Parkway location, expected to open November 1st. A unit that would help with the influx of patients they’re seeing.

“We are working for 36 positions. 18 nurses and 18 techs. So far we’ve hired 12 nurses and 9 techs, so 21 of those," Kelli Powers said.

Kelli Powers, President of Decatur-Morgan Hospital said Thursday, with training and more positions needing to be filled, this new unit won’t open until at least the middle of November.

Powers says it’s crucial to get this unit open given current trends they’re seeing at the Decatur-Morgan campus.

“We’re continuing to hear about more and more positives in the community. We’re really concerned this is going to go up and we’re gonna have more hospitalizations," Powers explained.

Right now, there are 27 positive COVID-19 patients at Decatur-Morgan Hospital.

That’s more patients than they’ve had in months, but not quite at their peak which was 34 patients in July.

Powers says for now, it’s up to the community to stop the spread of this disease.

“The community’s role is very important, we need everybody to wear their mask, to social distance as much as possible and wash your hands," Powers said.

If you want to apply to work in the COVID-19 unit at the Parkway location, contact Vincent Hawthorne.

You can email him at vincent.hawthorne@dmhnet.org or call him at 256-468-9560.

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