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43 Florida Hospitals Have Zero ICU Capacity, Per State Metrics, But Hospitals Say They Have Capacity


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Orange County's Dr. Raul Pino and Mayor Jerry Demings brief the media Monday as the county's cases and positivity rate continue to climb. Photo: Orange County

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Currently, 43 hospitals in Florida have zero beds available in the intensive care unit, including five hospitals in Orange and Osceola counties.

Florida added 7,361  confirmed COVID-19 cases on Monday alone. But that’s just a snapshot in time. Statewide, hospitalizations for COVID-19 are also increasing and intensive care beds are filling up.

WMFE Health Reporter Abe Aboraya spoke with All Things Considered Host Nicole Darden Creston.

ABORAYA: It’s not good news. Florida added 60,562 cases in the last week. Another way to look at it – 51 percent of all of Florida’s positive cases have been confirmed in the last two weeks alone, or 109,333 total cases in two weeks.

Florida’s been averaging 8,587 cases per day for the last two weeks – the worst average in the country. Per capita, we’re seeing 40 new cases for every 100,000, the second worst rate in the country, behind only Arizona.

By the metrics of the Harvard Global Health Institute, more than half of all Florida counties have virus levels at a point meaning “uncontrolled spread.” That institute advises policy makers that at this level, stay-at-home orders or advisories will be needed to get things under control

CRESTON: Wow, that is stunning. What do we know about the people who are getting COVID-19? On the bright side, the virus seems to be spreading in a younger age group, right?

ABORAYA: Yes. Right now, at least in Orange and Seminole counties, much of the spread has been traced back to bars reopening – so it is naturally running in a lower age-range. But it is expected to trend upward, especially with the level of asymptomatic and pre-symptomatic spread. The median age in Florida has been inching up and is now 40 years old, up from 33 two weeks ago. And while it is true that 85 percent of deaths are in people over the age of 65, that does not mean there are zero deaths in the younger age ranges.

Just look at the age bracket we’re seeing with the most cases right now, 35 to 44. There have been about 34,076 cases in this group, and about 1 in 10 of those need to be hospitalized. Out of the 1,518 hospitalized, about 5 percent of them have died. Sure, the raw number is 70 deaths, which is low, but for that age bracket, that percent of the people hospitalized who are dying is a scary number for people working in health care.

CRESTON: OK, let’s stay with the hospital topic for a moment. Are we coming to a point where hospitals could be overwhelmed?

ABORAYA: That is absolutely the key area to watch. Right now in Florida, 43 hospitals have zero beds available in the intensive care unit. That includes five hospitals in Orange and Osceola counties.

The hospital with the most ICU patients and zero capacity in Central Florida is Orlando Regional Medical Center in downtown Orlando. According to figures reported to the Agency for Health Care Administration, ORMC has 65 patients in the ICU – and no beds available.

Now that sounds scary. But in reality, what we’re seeing is more of a staffing issue than a lack of raw beds and ventilators. Orlando Health says that as the number of patients dropped in March, it consolidated and reduced the number of ICU beds that were staffed and in operation. In a statement, Orlando Health says it has 200 ICU beds available – and can surge up to 500 ICU beds if needed.

“We are carefully monitoring the increases in patient volumes,” Orlando Health officials wrote in a statement. “If the need for additional beds grows, Orlando Health will re-open units and make other necessary adjustments in order to meet the needs of the community.”

In a press conference this week, Dr. Raul Pino said the total number of people hospitalized in Orange County has more than doubled in the last two weeks, from 164 patients two weeks ago to 356 now. The number of ICU patients has also nearly doubled, with 74 ICU patients now.

“I know we always have a concern about beds and what is available in the county for residents,” Pino said. “Although we have seen an increase in the number of hospitalizations, the systems are reporting that they are not concerned about the need for a surge yet as a system. It could be that a hospital has more cases than another and things have to be reshuffled, readjust.”

Now, to be clear, Orange County and others say we have not gotten to a point where patients are being diverted from any of the hospital systems.

CRESTON: So looking forward – what can we expect?

ABORAYA: Until the numbers start letting up, we should expect to see an increase in the number of hospitalizations – and eventually, an increase in the number of deaths. Both of those are lagging indicators. Unfortunately, without more mitigation efforts- like mask mandates or stay at home orders, things are likely to get worse before they get better.

The chart below is a static chart from data updated early in the morning July 7th, and will not update in real time. For the most recent information, visit the Agency for Health Care Administration’s site. 

County File Number Provider Name Adult ICU Census Available Adult ICU Available Adult ICU% Total Adult ICU Capacity
BROWARD 100086 BROWARD HEALTH NORTH 31 0 0.00% 31
BROWARD 100230 MEMORIAL HOSPITAL PEMBROKE 14 0 0.00% 14
CHARLOTTE 100047 BAYFRONT HEALTH PUNTA GORDA 12 0 0.00% 12
CITRUS 100249 BAYFRONT HEALTH SEVEN RIVERS 11 0 0.00% 11
CLAY 23960117 ASCENSION ST VINCENT’S CLAY COUNTY 8 0 0.00% 8
CLAY 100016 KINDRED HOSPITAL-NORTH FLORIDA 5 0 0.00% 5
COLUMBIA 100156 LAKE CITY MEDICAL CENTER 21 0 0.00% 21
ESCAMBIA 23960076 SELECT SPECIALTY HOSPITAL PENSACOLA 6 0 0.00% 6
HIGHLANDS 100109 ADVENTHEALTH SEBRING 10 0 0.00% 10
HILLSBOROUGH 100173 ADVENTHEALTH TAMPA 37 0 0.00% 37
HILLSBOROUGH 23960105 ST JOSEPHS HOSPITAL SOUTH 23 0 0.00% 23
HILLSBOROUGH 100206 MEMORIAL HOSPITAL OF TAMPA 12 0 0.00% 12
HILLSBOROUGH 100259 SOUTH BAY HOSPITAL 12 0 0.00% 12
HILLSBOROUGH 100143 KINDRED HOSPITAL-CENTRAL TAMPA 6 0 0.00% 6
HILLSBOROUGH 100115 KINDRED HOSPITAL-BAY AREA-TAMPA 4 0 0.00% 4
LEE 100244 CAPE CORAL HOSPITAL 22 0 0.00% 22
LEE 100107 LEHIGH REGIONAL MEDICAL CENTER 7 0 0.00% 7
LEON 23960059 SELECT SPECIALTY HOSPITAL – TALLAHASSEE 6 0 0.00% 6
MARION 23960039 WEST MARION COMMUNITY HOSPITAL 15 0 0.00% 15
MIAMI-DADE 100029 NORTH SHORE MEDICAL CENTER 48 0 0.00% 48
MIAMI-DADE 100154 SOUTH MIAMI HOSPITAL 28 0 0.00% 28
MIAMI-DADE 100020 DOCTORS HOSPITAL 18 0 0.00% 18
MIAMI-DADE 100165 WESTCHESTER GENERAL HOSPITAL 7 0 0.00% 7
MIAMI-DADE 23960028 SELECT SPECIALTY HOSPITAL-MIAMI 5 0 0.00% 5
OKALOOSA 100223 FORT WALTON BEACH MEDICAL CENTER 26 0 0.00% 26
ORANGE 100006 ORLANDO HEALTH ORLANDO REGIONAL MEDICAL CENTER 65 0 0.00% 65
ORANGE 100162 ADVENTHEALTH WINTER PARK 10 0 0.00% 10
ORANGE 120002 ORLANDO HEALTH DR P PHILLIPS HOSPITAL 9 0 0.00% 9
OSCEOLA 100089 ADVENTHEALTH KISSIMMEE 18 0 0.00% 18
OSCEOLA 23960111 POINCIANA MEDICAL CENTER 6 0 0.00% 6
PALM BEACH 100234 JFK MEDICAL CENTER NORTH CAMPUS 10 0 0.00% 10
PALM BEACH 100130 LAKESIDE MEDICAL CENTER 6 0 0.00% 6
PINELLAS 100127 MORTON PLANT HOSPITAL 59 0 0.00% 59
PINELLAS 100238 NORTHSIDE HOSPITAL 35 0 0.00% 35
PINELLAS 100043 MEASE DUNEDIN HOSPITAL 20 0 0.00% 20
PINELLAS 100055 ADVENTHEALTH NORTH PINELLAS 12 0 0.00% 12
PINELLAS 100180 ST PETERSBURG GENERAL HOSPITAL 11 0 0.00% 11
POLK 100157 LAKELAND REGIONAL MEDICAL CENTER 76 0 0.00% 76
POLK 100052 WINTER HAVEN HOSPITAL 40 0 0.00% 40
POLK 100121 BARTOW REGIONAL MEDICAL CENTER 13 0 0.00% 13
SARASOTA 100166 DOCTORS HOSPITAL OF SARASOTA 14 0 0.00% 14
SUMTER 23960086 SELECT SPECIALTY HOSPITAL-THE VILLAGES INC 8 0 0.00% 8
VOLUSIA 100045 ADVENTHEALTH DELAND 18 0 0.00% 18

 

 


WMFE is a partner with Health News Florida, a statewide collaborative reporting on health care.

Health reporting on WMFE is supported in part by AdventHealth.

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Abe Aboraya

About Abe Aboraya

Health Reporter

Abe Aboraya started writing for newspapers in High School. After graduating from the University of Central Florida in 2007, he spent a year traveling and working as a freelance reporter for the Seattle Times and the Seattle Weekly, and working for local news websites in the San Francisco Bay area. Most recently Abe ... Read Full Bio »

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