CRMC still open for patients, limiting inpatient surgeries

By Michelle Price
UCBJ Managing Editor

COOKEVILLE – Despite some mid-state hospitals announcing that they are at capacity and are diverting patients elsewhere, Cookeville Regional Medical Center (CRMC) is still open for business and operating close to normal. However, beginning Monday, inpatient surgeries will be limited to only urgent and emergent conditions. 

Friday’s count of 57 positive COVID patients is still well below the record of 87 positive inpatients that the medical center had last December. The county of residence for those 57 is as follows: Putnam (28), White (6), Fentress (1), Cumberland (9), Overton (2), Smith (1), Warren (1), Rhea (1), Jackson (3), Wilson (1), Unknown (1) and one patient each from the states of Virginia, California and Colorado.

There were 15 COVID ICU patients yesterday, down from 17 on Tuesday.

Unlike some hospitals that have a limited number of COVID beds, CRMC does not have a set number of beds. As the volume of COVID patients increases, patients are placed in other designated units.

There have been no recent admissions of any pediatric (under 18) COVID patients; however, there have been patients from each adult age range.

Outpatient surgeries have not been stopped. Scheduling will depend on staffing needs and volumes.

Physicians are still reminding the public that Bamlavinimab is available seven days a week at CRMC as a preventative treatment to help high-risk patients who test positive for COVID-19 avoid hospitalization. 

Those at high risk include people who meet any of the following: over 65 years of age, BMI over 35, have diabetes mellitus, kidney disease or any immunosuppressive disease or under immunosuppressive treatment. Those 55 or older with one or more or the following, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, COPD or chronic lung disease, also qualify.

The low percentage of people fully vaccinated is still a major concern to healthcare providers. A study released yesterday by Vanderbilt University School of Medicine showed that vaccination rates among all age groups in the Upper Cumberland were the lowest of any region in the state.

Chart by Vanderbilt University

As of Wednesday, for the month of August, 90% of all positive COVID admissions at CRMC (89 total positive admissions) have not been fully vaccinated, and 67% of COVID infusions are patients not fully vaccinated.

CRMC continues to emphasize the use of masks and social distancing when it is necessary to be out in public. 

Michelle Price is the managing editor of the Upper Cumberland Business Journal and can be reached via email. Send an email.

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