Area hospitals prepare to move forward without ‘Safer at Home’ order

Published: May. 14, 2020 at 6:50 PM CDT
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A major concern Gov. Tony Evers raised is the possibility of a surge in COVID-19 cases, after the state’s highest court struck down the ‘Safer at Home’ extension order.

NBC15 reached out to area hospitals to see how they are preparing.

The Wisconsin Hospital Association sent a statement that said for the past several weeks, hospitals have been carefully phasing back into providing important services and procedures.

“While we continue to review the decision, we believe it has no direct impact on the ability of hospitals to continue safely and effectively caring for patients, and no one should hesitate to use our state’s excellent health care system,” said WHA CEO Eric Borgerding in the statement.

UW Health Chief Quality Officer Dr. Jeff Pothof said they have been ready and planning for an increase in COVID-19 patients and a surge, should there ever be one.

However, he said as health care professionals, they are worried about the state of the state.

“You know right now in the current situation the guard rails have been lifted, but the cliff is still there, COVID has not gone away, the danger is still there, people are still dying in our state,” he said.

He said a vast majority of the state does understand the risk.

“The way they can protect themselves and their neighbors is to practice physical distancing, to wear a mask, wash their hands and to watch the metrics in the badger bounce back,” Pothof said.

Right now UW Health has the capacity for 110


Pothof said it is hard to predict the number of future cases, but every health system has a limit to its capacity.

Borgerding wrote in his statement: “While we are entering a new phase in fighting this virus, we encourage our citizens and businesses to continue doing their part to help our communities stay safe.”

For more information and data on current hospital capabilities click


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