The state’s hospital and nursing leaders in Iowa pleaded Tuesday with Iowans to take safety steps to stop the spread of COVID-19 as the glut of cases continued to tax their ability to help people with the virus. “We have folks new in health care and those who have been around for decades who are astounded by the amount of death and serious morbidity they are dealing with on a daily basis,” Dr. Tammy Chance, medical director of quality initiatives at Boone County Hospital, said. Dr. Hijinio Carreon, chief medical officer at MercyOne Des Moines, said, “If we don’t, as a community, rally around to supporting our healthcare systems and attempting to minimize the spread, we could be in a dire situation over the next several weeks.” Kirk Norris, president and CEO, Iowa Hospital Association (IHA photo)
Asked what “dire” means, Kirk Norris, president of the Iowa Hospital Association, said it means patients showing up at a hospital and no staff is available to take care of them right away. “It’s the very thing we warned about in March,” Norris told IowaWatch.