Hogan says ‘We’re starting to level off’ but concern remains for hospitals – CBS Baltimore

BALTIMORE (WJZ) – Maryland recorded its all-time high number of hospitalizations Wednesday with 3,462 patients. While some doctors believe the Northeast may be about to reach the peak of the omicron wave, top federal officials warn the variant remains highly contagious.

“Most people will get prostatitis and what we need to do is make sure the hospitals can still function,” FDA Acting Administrator Dr. Janet Woodcock said this week.

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Governor Larry Hogan told WJZ hospitals are short of a third of their staff because of the pandemic.

“The good news is that we are starting to slow down. It hasn’t spiked like it used to, and we’re happy about that. But we have a lot of people who are hospitalized with covid,” Hogan said. “More than 3,400 people were hospitalized today in Maryland. We lack medical staff for a number of reasons. One, they are just exhausted and exhausted after two years of working around the clock. Second, many of them are actually contracting covid and they are in quarantine. Some estimate we may be short of about a third of our medical staff.”

The head of the Maryland Hospital Association told WJZ Investigator Mike Hellgren that 14 hospitals are operating to crisis care standards and the number of patients is almost double what it was a year ago.

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“We think that’s amazing and here we are getting close to double that number. It’s a tough, difficult situation,” said Association President and CEO Bob Atlas. “Capacity is limited but we have this growing amount and that is squeezing out other types of care.

Atlas also warns, “If you don’t have a life-threatening emergency, don’t rush to the hospital. And certainly don’t go to the hospital just for a routine fallopian tube check.”

WJZ also learned that the cyberattack that crippled the state health department’s computers last month was ransomware: Employees extorted money, but Maryland didn’t pay. The state did not disclose whether it knew who was behind it or if it was linked to other cyberattacks.

The incident left the public bewildered about how quickly covid was spreading, with the state not updating the number of cases, deaths and positive rates for weeks.

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“It is a serious problem. They’ve made amazing progress — a huge team of people to solve the problem — but it’s not fixed. The good news is, unlike Texas and a few other states, we haven’t lost hundreds of millions of dollars. And we didn’t compromise the data of millions of people. But that’s a big problem. It was a ransomware attack. They are targeting health departments around the country,” Governor Hogan said Wednesday.

https://baltimore.cbslocal.com/2022/01/12/covid-latest-hogan-says-we-are-starting-to-level-off-but-concern-remains-for-hospitals-dept-of-health-cyberattack-was-ransomware/ Hogan says ‘We’re starting to level off’ but concern remains for hospitals – CBS Baltimore

Dustin Huang

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