‘We are really thrilled’: COVID-19 hospitalizations in Florida lowest in more than a year

There was a time when hundreds of people were being admitted to the hospital for COVID-19, and each day it seemed the numbers were rising and people were worrying about ICU capacity and bed availability.

But now, things are different.

“Over the past seven days, our numbers haven’t really ever been this low ever before. And we are really thrilled to see that,” said Dr. Rajiv Bahl, an emergency medicine physician in Central Florida who has worked in emergency rooms day in and day out during the pandemic.

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The state’s hospitalizations from COVID-19 are the lowest they’ve been in more than a year. Today is a 40% decrease from a month ago, and more than an 80% drop from last year’s summer surge.

“It’s a little almost celebratory to see these numbers starting to decrease,” Bahl said. “We’re all very happy and kind of getting back to a limit of our previous norm.”

The reason is vaccinations. Bahl said he has yet to see someone who is vaccinated come in with sever coronavirus symptoms.

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As the ER visits and hospitalizations for COVID-19 decline, Bahl said he is now starting to see more people come in with congestive heart failure, heart attacks and strokes, so he stresses now is the time to visit your primary care doctor if you put off your check-up during the pandemic.

“Nothing really waits on COVID-19; all these health conditions live in their own habitat and do their own thing,” Bahl said.

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Adam Poulisse, WFTV.com

Adam Poulisse joined WFTV in November 2019.