BROCKTON, Mass. — Hospitals across Massachusetts are starting to fill up to 80% capacity. In Brockton, Boston 25 News has been reporting that, month after month, they have remained in the red zone. Now, hospital officials said, the concern is younger people are showing up, testing positive and spreading it in the community.
“When the pandemic started they kept cutting hours,” said Coralys Vargas from Brockton.
Vargas is a mother of three who lost her job as a cashier at local Home Depot because of the pandemic. The Vargas family is living off of one income.
“It’s really hard because I like to help my husband,” Vargas said.
“People needing to go to the hospital and get on the respirators, it’s scary,” said Avry Sandler.
Nearly everyone has a story about how COVID-19 is affecting their lives.
“The staff is going above and beyond to take care of our COVID patients,” said Barbie Malacaria, the associate VP of nursing at Signature Healthcare Brockton.
The hardworking doctors and nurses at Signature Healthcare Brockton Hospital are now getting ready to move into the surge area for COVID-19 patients during this second surge.
“The rates are high and coming to the hospital for care,” said Kim Walsh, the vice president for patient services and chief nursing officer.
There are now 35 COVID patients in the hospital and six in the ICU.
“There are a number of families that are testing positive as they come through the emergency department, people living in close housing,” Walsh said.
But it’s the younger crowd they’re concerned about.
“The 20-to-25-year-old that is coming with symptoms, coming and not being admitted, going back in the community,” Walsh said.
A reminder that the virus is still so real and health officials are asking you to do your part.
“Wear a mask and don’t bring the virus home to those at higher risk,” Walsh said.
The hardest part, the nurses and doctors are not only caring for the patients, but they are also emotionally filling the void of visitors who are not allowed in the hospitals.
Hospital officials said, for people who are in labor and for end of life care, they are allowed to bring a significant other. But for many of the COVID-19 patients, they are counting on the staff, who are working relentless hours.
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