COVID-19 stretching rural hospitals thin

Local News

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — As COVID cases rise in the state, hospitals are being stretched thin.

While larger hospital systems like Baptist and UAMS can handle that load better, rural hospitals are seeing their resources stretched to the max.

Rural hospitals are used to working with less resources because the margins are a little thinner but this recent uptick in COVID hospitalizations is slowly taking its toll on those smaller hospitals.

“We’ve had to pull some of those out of their administrative responsibilities and whenever, in a small place you have one person doing three jobs already from an administrative standpoint , you know, those three jobs don’t get done if they’re in clinical staffing. ” said Dr. Rex Jones, Magnolia Regional CEO.

Dr. Jones says about 40% of his patients right now are COVID patients and resources just get stretched because it’s more intensive to tend to those patients because of the extra PPE needed and staff are more stressed mentally because of the heightened awareness and caution over time.

Dr. Jones also says they have a sort of unofficial co-op with some of the other hospitals in the area where they will share certain resources.

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