Doctors worried about healthcare system strain as hospitalizations surge

Record high hospitalizations at UAB, across Alabama

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Today, more people in Alabama are hospitalized with COVID-19 than at any point during the pandemic so far.

Sunday, almost 250 people were sick enough to be admitted into Alabama hospitals. UAB alone had 125 hospitalized COVID-19 positive patients today, an all-time high.

“It’s an important point to make, this has nothing to do with Thanksgiving,” said Dr. Don Williamson, former state health officer and current Alabama Hospital Association president.

We won’t get a clear picture of the virus spread on Thanksgiving for another week or two.

“We aren’t far enough either in terms of cases, or in terms of hospitalizations, to be any way related to Thanksgiving,” explained Dr. Williamson.

What these climbing numbers mean is that there’s a lot of COVID-19 in Alabama.

“This simply represents uncontrolled community transmission,” he said.

Statewide, more than 1,700 people are in hospital beds because of COVID-19... and hospitals are already strained. Dr. Williamson has been in medicine and public health for decades.

“I’ve never seen anything that makes me as worried about the sustainability of our healthcare system as COVID does over the next eight weeks,” said Dr. Williamson.

He urges people to stay home, wear masks, and stay apart.

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