Jamiee Belsky, an emergency room doctor in Billings, Montana, is struggling to keep up with the influx of new COVID-19 patients.”So we’re — we’re running out of beds,” she explained.The ICU at Billings Clinic, the state’s largest hospital, is at 150 percent capacity, with younger and sicker patients admitted on a daily basis. The National Guard is on hand to assist with new patient care and screening, while hallways house the overflow.
“People need to get vaccinated because we’re in pain right now,” Belsky said.Frank Miller, 59, was admitted to the hospital with COVID-19 more than two weeks ago. The unvaccinated engineer was on a ventilator for more than a week.
“I struggled with it because I was on a ventilator,” he admitted, adding that he was “scared out of my mind.”Miller explained, “Because you don’t know.” “You have no idea what is going on. Afterward. I thought I’d get out of it quickly and be fine. And then I couldn’t move my hands at all. I was unable to feed myself.”Montana averaged about 108 COVID-19 patients in hospital ICUs over the last week, breaking the record set during the winter of 2020. Since the beginning of the month, 35 people have died in the state.”You have good days and bad days,” Belsky explained.
“Some days, I have to call one of my college buddies and say, ‘Hey man, it’s been a bad day.’ Last night, we lost a tough patient.'”
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