‘We should expect continuous surges:’ AdventHealth anticipates future COVID spikes as hospitalizations decrease

Healthcare system anticipates more surges without higher vaccination rate

ORLANDO, Fla. – AdventHealth leaders announced the hospital system downgraded to “yellow” status after reporting a drop in patients, but doctors are warning we could see another surge.

Dr. Sanjay Pattani, associate chief medical officer of AdventHealth Orlando and executive medical director of the healthcare system’s Mission Control, joined Dr. Eduardo Oliveria, executive medical director of critical care services for AdventHealth’s Central Florida Division, during the hospital’s morning briefing on Thursday.

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The pair discussed the current delta surge as well as future COVID spikes that we could likely see.

“We should expect continuous surges,” Pattani said.

The doctors said while we are past the peak of the delta surge, they are anticipating future spikes in cases.

“We should expect surges and spikes. If you look at the trends from the past three or four surges, they usually have about a window of about four to six months,” Pattani said.

This comes as the hospital system reports a 40% drop in COVID hospitalizations. The hospital said it is currently treating 1,100 patients across Central Florida compared to the peak 1,700 patients a month ago.

“This drop that we’ve seen in positivity, in the community as well as admissions has translated back into the ICU,” Oliveria said.

The decrease in hospitalizations has also prompted AdventHealth to move from “red” to “yellow” status, which allows for more deferred surgical procedures. The hospital was in “black” status during the peak and postponed all non-emergency surgeries.

Oliveria said at the time the ICUs were above 100% capacity.

“Which means we had to overflow care outside of the usual ICU environment, adapting other environments to care for the critically ill,” he said.

While hospital leaders said we are on the other side of this latest surge, they’re urging everyone to get vaccinated with the hope future spikes won’t be as bad.

“I feel very confident that if we move forward with strong vaccination efforts, we may not 100% prevent those surges, but we’ll make them much milder and much easier to handle,” Oliveria said.

About the Author:

Amanda Castro, a proud UCF alum, joined the News 6 team in November 2015 and was promoted to weekend morning anchor in April 2016. Go Knights!