Covid: Devon inpatient numbers double in 14 days – BBC


The number of people in hospital with Covid in Devon has doubled in a fortnight, according to NHS Devon.
The inpatient figures, which have risen to 292, are higher than at any other point during the pandemic.
The NHS said the last time that Covid numbers were as high was in January 2021, before most people had Covid vaccinations.
It comes as health bosses said almost 1,200 NHS staff in Devon were currently off work due to Covid.
NHS Devon said that many people had tested positive for Covid while in hospital for other conditions, which had led to patients who were already vulnerable becoming more unwell.
It added that four patients were in intensive care, while a further 37 patients were awaiting test results.
"While it is encouraging that the majority of our patients who have tested positive for Covid-19 are in hospital for other conditions and are asymptomatic or experiencing mild symptoms, the impact that the presence of Covid-19 has in our hospitals is really significant," explained Ian Currie, medical director of Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust.
Mr Currie said that, under current guidelines, one patient testing positive for Covid could result in the closure of a whole ward, meaning that beds were unavailable for emergency admissions and planned operations.
The NHS Devon Clinical Commissioning Group's medical director, Dr Paul Johnson, added: "These incredibly high numbers of patients with Covid-19 has a huge impact on the NHS ability to carry out planned care for patients, who have already had long waits due to the pandemic."
Recorded Covid case rates in Devon, Plymouth and Torbay are about 750 per 100,000 – above the England average of 542 per 100,000, current figures said.
A further 183 care services, such as care homes and other social care providers, currently had Covid outbreaks, health bosses said.
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