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Healthcare workers from Oregon being sent to California to help with COVID-19


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    PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) — As California deals with a massive surge in COVID-19 cases, Oregonians are being sent to that state help ease the burden.

California hospitals are overrun with COVID-19 patients, and frontline healthcare workers are taking on grueling shifts to deal with the problem.

Ryan Hutchinson, a healthcare worker from Medford, arrived in Apple Valley, California on Sunday to offer his services for a week.

He is working at Saint Mary’s medical center, which he says is beyond capacity for patients.

He says the hospital is licensed for 212 patients with 30 emergency room beds. Right now, he says there are 285 patients and 50 to 100 people in the ER regularly.

He says the hospital continues to put up emergency tents outside to hold patients on stretchers, but there continues to be more than the facility should handle.

“Throughout their ER hallways, they have signs on the walls, A, B, C, D, E, F, G and they have patients lined up head to toe with IV pumps, wheelchairs. You can hardly even get a stretcher or a wheelchair through there,” said Hutchinson, Imaging Director for Providence Medford Medical Center.

Hutchinson says the hospital is seeing a wide range of demographics in COVID-19 patients.

He says most healthcare workers are working long shifts and going without any breaks because facilities are so understaffed.

Facilities are also having to deal with their own COVID-19 cases among staff.

Hutchinson says right now the facility he’s working at alone has 150 to 160 positive COVID-19 cases.

He says what he’s seeing in California should serve as a warning to every state about what could happen if we don’t take this virus seriously.

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Article Topic Follows: National-World

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