UPDATED 1:31 PM PT — Thursday, May 7, 2020
Emergency doctors have voiced their concerns over the low number of hospital patients coming in amid the coronavirus outbreak. According to reports, emergency room volumes are down by about 40 to 50 percent across the nation.
Experts believe non-coronavirus patients who still need urgent care are avoiding the hospital because they’re afraid they will catch the virus there.
An emergency doctor in California claimed certain coronavirus hotspots have also created an idea that the health care system is being overwhelmed everywhere, despite this not being the case.
“The first few weeks of the pandemic it was very scary because it was so quiet. We would normally see 100 patients a day, and overnight we were down to 30 or 40. All of us were just waiting for the tidal wave to hit.” – Dr. David Tashman, ER Medical Director at USC Verdugo Hills Hospital
Doctors have said they’re trying to reassure patients they’re taking precautions to keep visitors safe. They have encouraged those who require emergency attention to immediately seek help.
According to the latest data from Johns Hopkins University, there are more than 968,000 active cases of COVID-19 in the U.S. As of Thursday, over 73,000 people have died, while more than 189,000 have recovered.
This comes as many states begin to slowly reopen businesses and ramp up testing. So far, more than 7.7 million tests have been administered.