Phoebe Reports Monday COVID-19 Numbers

Staff Report From Albany CEO

Tuesday, May 19th, 2020

As of noon Monday, these were Phoebe’s COVID-19 numbers:

Total COVID-19 Patients in Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital – 67 (40 positive and 27 pending)

Total COVID-19 Patients in Phoebe Sumter Medical Center – 24 (12 positive and 12 pending)

Total COVID-19 Patients in Phoebe Worth Medical Center – 0

Total Inpatients Recovered – 326

Total Positive Deaths from Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital – 92

Total Positive Deaths from Phoebe Sumter – 27

Today’s numbers show a fairly significant increase in the number of patients Phoebe is treating for COVID-19, but that does not necessarily indicate a spike in positive cases.  A testing issue has increased the number of patients under investigation (PUI) for COVID-19 at Phoebe hospitals in Albany and Americus.

“For the last seven weeks, we have been able to conduct in-house rapid COVID-19 testing on every patient being admitted to our hospitals.  Knowing right away whether patients are positive has allowed us to admit them to units where they will receive the most appropriate care, cohort COVID-19 patients together, conserve personal protective equipment and best protect our staff.  Unfortunately, our supply of rapid tests ran out over the weekend, and we are now forced to wait several days to get lab results back.  Out of an abundance of caution, we must treat any patient with any coronavirus symptoms as a PUI until we receive a test result.  That’s just the right thing to do to protect our staff and other patients.  It is imperative that we have uninterrupted access to rapid testing, and it is frustrating that the supply of reagents needed to conduct that testing has been inconsistent.  We have come close to running out on previous occasions, and a shipment we were supposed to receive last week did not arrive.  We are working with our state and federal partners to try ensure more reliable deliveries of these vital tests,” said Scott Steiner, Phoebe Putney Health System Chief Executive Officer.