“Bryan Is Full” — Covid Patient Load Forces Delay In Elective Procedures

Lincoln, NE (August 19, 2021)  At Bryan Hospital, officials are calling it a precarious situation.

“We are being as clear and open and honest as possible.  Bryan Medical Center is full.”

Spokesman Bob Ravenscroft made that pronouncement Thursday morning at the Hospitals’ regular Covid-19 status briefing.  Ravenscroft said that it’s both a physical capacity and a staffing issue in the face of higher Covid-19 patient loads.

At one point a little over a month ago, Bryan Hospital had no Covid-19 patients. Thursday’s numbers continued the slow and steady rise that’s been occurring throughout August.

“As it relates to Covid we currently have 66 patients hospitalized and 61 of them are unvaccinated.”

The rising number of patients and the difficulty in staffing lead CEO John Woodridge to announce the change:

“Surgeries and procedures requiring an overnight stay, that can be delayed 30 days, we will not schedule until further notice.”

Woodridge said procedures already scheduled will be carried out because of the preparations that patients have made to prepare for them.  He also added that anyone who truly needs care will get it.

“Surgeries and procedures will continue for any surgery that would cause serious harm to life and limb if delayed, so I want to assure people of that.”

Woodridge also made it clear that outpatient surgeries and procedures are not affected by Thursday’s announcement.

In order to fully explain the situation, Woodridge said that the no vacancy situation at Bryan has caused ripple effects in surrounding hospitals.

“Tuesday we had 578 patients.  We were holding 30 patients in the Emergency Department waiting for an in-patient bed to free up.  And, at that same time we had 14 other Hospitals that were holding patients that they wanted to refer in to Bryan.”

The 578 patients Tuesday tipped the scale, according to Woodridge, causing them to implement the delay on elective procedures that could be delayed.  The daily count has dropped to around 540 over the past couple of days.

Ravenscroft repeated his request that all eligible but unvaccinated people get the shots as soon as possible.  He referred to Thursday’s patient count.  66 Covid-19 patients under care.  61 of them not vaccinated.