Morgan County Health Officials Planning For Patient Surge

By Benjamin Cox on March 27, 2020 at 4:19pm

Morgan County Health officials said today in their daily press release that things have remained the same over the last two days as far as the number of cases in the county. There is only 1 positive case being treated, an 84 year old man from rural Morgan County, who is currently in critical condition at Passavant Area Hospital. Morgan County Health Department officials are still tracing contact of the patient to determine how he contracted the virus.

To date, there have been 27 test results for the county with 1 positive case, 9 pending results, and 17 negative results.

Passavant Area Hospital has created a 14-bed closed unit specially equipped to treat only COVID-19 patients in preparation for a patient surge that health officials warn is coming. The remodeled unit at Passavant includes patient rooms equipped with negative air pressure systems. Negative pressure rooms are commonly used to isolate patients with airborne contagious diseases and prevent cross-contamination from room to room. Negative pressure rooms contain ventilation that removes air from the room and expels it outside the building.

Clinical staff who normally are a part of elective surgeries or less busier parts of the hospital have been reassigned to different parts of the hospital, including being trained in care for COVID-19 patients.

Passavant President and CEO Dr. Scott Boston said in the release that the multi-step protocol to deal with a surge in patients has been a part of Passavant’s emergency planning protocols for a long time.