AdventHealth transitions to normal operations, with drop in positive COVID tests

Doctors urge vaccinations and masks to keep trends headed in the right direction.

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  • | 3:30 p.m. September 18, 2021
Dr. Neil Finkler on the AdventHealth morning briefing
Dr. Neil Finkler on the AdventHealth morning briefing
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from: AdventHealth Central Florida Division Corporate Communications

The number of COVID-19 patients hospitalized across AdventHealth’s Central Florida system remained on a downward slope this week to about 850 as the hospital transitioned back to normal operations or “Green Status.”

“I think it’s really important our patients understand we are now business as usual,” said Dr. Neil Finkler, chief clinical officer for AdventHealth’s Central Florida Division, at Thursday’s AdventHealth Morning Briefing. “We understand that COVID will be with us and we are going to need to understand how to care for COVID patients while we also care for others that need care in our community.”

Finkler cautioned that the pandemic is not over and the number of patients is now at about the same level the health care system saw during the January peak. He said the community continues to need higher vaccination rates and safety precautions such as masks and frequent handwashing.

The move to “Green Status” is a reflection of AdventHealth’s continued learnings and improved efficiency at flexing its staff, space and equipment and supplies to adjust to virus levels.

The rate of positive virus tests at Centra Care, the health care system’s urgent care clinics, also dropped this week to 12.5%, about half of the figure from about six weeks ago at the height of the Delta variant surge, said Dr. Tim Hendrix, senior medical director for Centra Care.

He also said he’s seen an increased demand for the vaccine as a result of the Delta surge because more people are experiencing the severe illness or death of a loved one.

The vast majority of hospitalized COVID-19 patients continue to be unvaccinated, Finkler said.


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