Monday, May 16, 2022|
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Hilo Medical Center has been judiciously administering monoclonal antibody treatments to patients with COVID-19.
As people continue to flock to HMC’s emergency department, doctors have been screening patients who are asking for the antibody treatments to make sure the most vulnerable have access first.
“We have a limited supply, and there is a nationwide shortage, so emergency room doctors screen people before giving the treatment,” said HMC spokeswoman Elena Cabatu.
“You need to have COVID-19 and be within 10 days of testing positive and be at risk for severe illness due to underlying conditions,” she said.
HMC is averaging about 25 COVID-19 patients per day in the facility, although many are staying for shorter periods compared to the delta surge.
Recently, HMC had a three- to four-day period during which the hospital had more than a 150 patients in the ER per day.
“The ER is feeling the brunt of the work, but the entire hospital is very full, which causes longer wait times while we cycle people in and out,” Cabatu said. “There is a lot going on, and our staff is hustling and working really hard every day.”
According to Cabatu, a team of nurses provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency will be arriving at HMC this week to help with COVID care.
“We ask people for understanding and patience as we try to navigate these busy times at the hospital,” Cabatu said. “More FEMA nurses this week will really help, and relief is on the way!”
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