Orlando V.A. hospital has more COVID-19 patients than any other V.A. facility in U.S.
ORLANDO, Fla. - Hospitalizations from COVID-19 are on the decline across Florida, according to the state’s hospital association.
The Florida Hospital Association said Wednesday that a little more than 13,000 people in the state are in the hospital right now. That is down 12 percent from last week.
However, despite this decline, the V.A. hospital in Orlando has more COVID patients than any other V.A. facility in the country. V.A. hospitals across the country are seeing an influx of COVID-19 patients but none as bad as the one here.
On Wednesday, they said that they were dealing with 469 coronavirus cases.
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Heather Frebe, the Public Affairs Officer for the V.A. in Orlando, told FOX 35 that the number of active cases is largely based on other V.A. hospitals. The hospital closest with a high number of active cases is the V.A. in Bay Pines, Florida.
Important to note though is that the V.A. hospital in Orlando deals with more veterans as a whole.
"We serve about 125,000 vets and that runs from here in Orlando to Daytona and Viera, which is in Brevard all the way to Lake County. So, we have a very large veteran population," Frebe explained. The numbers are still concerning though when civilian hospitals in the area are reporting decreases in COVID-related patients. "Because we were dealing with a large surge over the last few weeks we wanted to make sure we were prepared."
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Hospital officials temporarily built an E.R. in the parking lot of the V.A. hospital, giving them an extra ten ICU beds.
Regarding the COVID-positive patients, Frebe said that "when we looked at a break down of our numbers, a majority of the people were unvaccinated that we were treating at this facility."
Hospital officials said that they will continue efforts of informing veterans about vaccinations and answer any questions that they have to try and convince them of the important of getting the shot.
Watch FOX 35 Orlando for the latest Central Florida news.