Coronavirus Update: March 27, 2020

March 27, 2020
Well, if you read my update last night, you may have noticed that I predicted the U.S. would overtake Italy and China in a matter of days to become the leading country in the world for COVID-19 infections. I was wrong.  It was only a matter of hours. As I write this, America has over 100,000 individuals verified as infected with the coronavirus and it is likely the actual number is much, much higher due to the lack of testing capacity.

As of midnight, Indiana had 981 positive cases and 24 deaths.  It is likely that in the intervening 20 hours we have added another 300 – 400 cases.  Hancock County now stands at 13 verified infections and one death.  At our hospital there are glimmers that things are beginning a slow ramp up, perhaps a sign of things to come.

I had the opportunity to sit in on a statewide meeting this evening where a predictive model was discussed that suggested a 12 week impact on hospitals which, during the highest intensity weeks, would consume 30% of inpatient capacity, require nearly double the ICU capacity and triple the ventilator capacity currently existing in the state.  Oddly, this analysis gave me some hope as our efforts at Hancock have successfully created more than 30% inpatient capacity, more than doubled our ICU capacity, and provided nearly three times the ventilator capacity than we had before.  Keep in mind that this is the most likely scenario and our actual experience could be somewhat lower, or much higher.

With these figures in mind I believe the real test will not be in space, not in equipment, not even in supplies, it will be in people.  The next 12 weeks will be arduous, we will be tested beyond anything any of us have experienced in our careers, indeed in our entire lives.  But I also know that the strength of Hancock

Health is exactly that – our People!  With that in mind, the following phrase sent to me by Chris Burns today is perfect: Hancock Health: Together, WE are the solution.

The next update will come on Monday as we provide another breather for the leadership team.  If you have the opportunity, please take advantage of the warmer days (70 degrees on Saturday!) to get outside with those closest to you (but no parties!), refresh, reinvigorate, and reflect on the many gifts God has given us.

Current projections indicate Indiana will hit the surge of COVID-19 positive patients in mid-April (perhaps late-April) so we are taking advantage of this time to continue our preparations:

All the Best,

Coronavirus Update: March 26, 2020Remember Your Doctors on March 30, National Doctors’ Day

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