Lee Health Hospitals treating record number of COVID-19 patients

Cape Coral Hospital ICU at capacity
Lee Health Hospitals have record number of COVID-19 patients
Posted at 6:45 PM, Jul 02, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-02 18:46:01-04

CAPE CORAL — Lee Health just broke another record Thursday for the number of COVID-19 patients it has in its hospitals, and now Cape Coral Hospital is reporting that its intensive care unit is at capacity.

Lee Health Hospitals are now treating 86 more COVID-19 patients than they were a week ago. That means the disease is continuing to spread in the community. We spoke with one woman who’s afraid her family may have found that out the hard way.

The woman did not want to be named. She lives in Fort Myers, and her daughter attends camp at the Cape Coral Yacht Club. Then on Wednesday, she learned one of the employees there tested positive for COVID-19.

“Just having a scare, it automatically just makes you realize, even though you’re, even if you’re someone who’s being safe, you still are always vulnerable," said the woman.

She said she spoke directly with the Yacht Club, and is glad they let her know about the positive case. The woman said she’s keeping her daughter at home, at least for the next week, and getting the whole family tested.

“You just see your child possibly in that hospital, and even a flash of them not making it, or being permanently altered by the disease is just enough. It’s plenty to make you stay put," said the woman.

That woman experienced a scare that is becoming a more common occurrence in Lee County. COVID-19 hospitalizations in continue to rise. On Thursday, COVID-19 patients at Lee Health were up to 258. Now, two hospitals, Cape Coral and Lehigh Regional, have their ICU’s at capacity.

We asked the Chief Officer of Hospital Operations at Lee Health, Scott Kashman, what they’re doing to accommodate the growing number of patients.

“One of the measures that Cape Coral is putting in place is to look and activate more beds they could turn into intensive care units, so they could have a broader and wider capacity," said Kashman.

Kashman also said they’re transferring some patients to other hospitals, but he said, if they’re going to get a handle on the increase in patients, they need the community’s help.

“That really comes down to the masking, the social distancing, that hand hygiene," said Kashman.

Kashman says, at least for right now, Lee Health is not worried about being overwhelmed by new patients.