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Ambulance Calls Soar Due to COVID


One of the many ways the pandemic is putting stress on the health care system is the first responders who transport patients to the hospital.

Travis Noyd from the Moline Fire Department, says so far their ambulances have carried more than 85 people to the hospital who were positive for COVID-19.

"Of that, 51 per cent of those patients in November, so over half of the COVID positive patients that we transported, we just transported this month and the month isn't over yet so I'm sure there'll be a few more."

And they've been as busy during the last two months as they were all of last spring when the pandemic began in the US.Linda Fredericksen from MEDIC EMS which serves Scott County, says because local hospitals are full or nearly full, MEDIC ambulances have taken local patients to other hospitals as far away as Chicago and Des Moines.

"We're starting to see more and more patients in the community - certainly we saw huge concentrations in October, and it was hard to believe it would get worse in November, but indeed it has."

She says MEDIC is currently responding to about 90 dispatches per day, but sometimes as high as 115 to 120.Both Fredericksen and Noyd say the pandemic is also stressing their employees - having to worry about rising numbers of patients, plus worrying about themselves and their families.