BREAKING: Genesis Hospitalizations Rising For Younger Patients, Lowering For Older Patients
BREAKING NEWS: More younger people are being hospitalized for more severe covid-19 symptoms, however, fewer older patients required hospitalization for COVID-19 illness in February and March as vaccines became available, according to Genesis Health System statistics.
While numbers are reducing for Quad-Citians over 50, Genesis Medical Centers experienced a rise in hospitalizations for patients ages 0-to-49.
“We are seeing more admissions in younger age groups and some of these patients are sicker,’’ said Kurt Andersen, M.D., senior vice president of physician operations and chief medical officer, Genesis Health System. “What we are experiencing is that the vaccine is effective and safe but you must be vaccinated.
“Now that everyone 16 and older has access, they need to be vaccinated. Vaccination can reduce COVID-19 illness, hospitalization and death.’’
As vaccines became more widely available in January, COVID-19 related hospitalizations in older age groups decreased significantly in February and March.
In January, 164 patients aged 60 years old and older required hospitalization in Genesis Medical Centers for COVID-19. In February, the number of COVID-related hospitalizations for those 60 and older fell 76 percent to 39 patients. In March, there were 44 COVID-19 related hospitalizations in the 60-and-older age groups in Genesis Medical Centers.
“The vaccine became available to those 65 and older initially and to people with conditions placing them at high risk. A month later, as the same people became fully vaccinated, we saw the steep decline in hospitalizations for patients 60 and older,’’ said Dr. Andersen. “Our concern now is younger age groups and the number of them requiring hospitalization.’’
In all of 2020, a total of seven patients in the 0-to-19 age group were hospitalized in Genesis hospitals for COVID-19. In the first three months of 2021, there were six hospitalizations of 0-to-19 patients.
There is a similar trend of 20-to-29 patients. In 2020, the total number hospitalized in that age group over the entire year was 26. Already this year, a total of 12 in the same age group were hospitalized in January, February and March.
“We are hopeful people will continue to support vaccination efforts. The vaccines we have available are proving the clinical trial results were accurate about effectiveness and safety,’’ Dr. Andersen said.
After asking people to remain patient as the vaccines were introduced, Dr. Andersen said, “it’s everyone’s turn now.’’
“We continue to encourage everyone to be vaccinated for themselves and for everyone around them,’’ Dr. Andersen said.