Oklahoma health officials warn that unless prevention protocols are not widely implemented, The number of COVID-19 hospitalizations in Oklahoma is projected to triple.
According to an analysis by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, there will be 2,711 Oklahomans hospitalized with COVID-19 by Dec. 28, 2020. It is also projected that by December 9, 2020, Oklahoma will average 5,000 cases per day.
As of Thursday, October 29, there are only 82 ICU beds available in Oklahoma, according to data from the Oklahoma State Department of Health. Hospitalizations from COVID-19 have reached record level four out of five days in the past week. Oklahoma now ranks fourth in the nation for the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations per 100,000.
Patti Davis, President of the Oklahoma Hospital Association, said the state should release data on ICU and bed availability.
Dr. George Monks, president of the Oklahoma State Medical Association said this data is “alarming” and should serve as a “wake-up call.”
“There’s only a finite number of resources and those resources are really stretched thin right now, so we have to do something different,” he said. “We have to change this path.”
Monks went on to say: “The solution to the hospital crisis that we’re seeing due to COVID, it’s not going to reside within the walls of the hospitals, that exists outside the walls of the hospitals,” he said. “We have got to modify our personal behaviors.”
Dr. Bruce Dart, Executive Director of the Tulsa Health Department in the last few months, has frequently requested that surrounding communities enact mask mandates, alluding to the dramatic rise in hospitalizations and city-specific data.