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As COVID-19 hospitalizations start to wane, some outpatient procedures will resume

AdventHealth Central Florida will transition out of “black status” and into “red status” beginning Sept. 1, meaning more outpatient procedures will be scheduled.

The hospital system transitioned to “black status” July 29 as COVID-19 hospitalizations soared to record numbers. Now, hospitalizations, while still far higher than previous peaks during the ongoing pandemic, are beginning to wane, and more outpatient procedures, like elective surgeries, can occur.

“We are thankful that we continue to see a downward trend of COVID patients in our hospitals, and that will allow us to provide care to those who have had to delay certain procedures,” said AdventHealth Chief Clinical Officer Dr. Neil Finkler. “Our teams are still working very hard, and we’re not out of the woods, but we want to do everything we can to improve the quality of life for those who have been patiently waiting.”

Under red status, AdventHealth hospitals will continue to reduce the number of surgeries and outpatient procedures performed, but outpatient procedures with, per the hospital system, “same-day discharges” can be scheduled.

“Patients impacted by the status change,” a spokesperson for the hospital system said in a press release, “will be contacted by their physician’s office to schedule their procedure.”

AdventHealth and Halifax Health officials shared with the press Aug. 26 optimism about the end of a recent surge in COVID-19 cases. The number of people hospitalized across the AdventHealth Central Florida system for COVID-19 as of Aug. 27 was 1,380 patients. This is down from a peak earlier in August of some 1,600 patients.

Halifax Health also began to see numbers dip, officials shared Aug. 26. The number of COVID-19 hospitalizations Aug. 26 was 133 patients, down from a 160-patient peak.

The vast majority of hospitalizations, including individuals in intensive care, were not vaccinated for COVID-19.

Across the state of Florida, the number of hospitalizations is in decline. According to data from the Florida Hospital Association, as of Aug. 31, 15,387 patients were confirmed to be hospitalized with COVID-19 across the state. This is down from peaks of some 17,000 patients in recent weeks.

Latest Florida Hospital Association statistics
GRAPHIC COURTESY FLORIDA HOSPITAL ASSOCIATION
The latest statewide hospitalization data from the Florida Hospital Association.

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