Concern grows over clinic’s ability to keep up with demand amid COVID-19 surge

Omicron variant
Omicron variant(NIAID)
Published: Jan. 12, 2022 at 6:09 PM MST
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TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) — COVID-19 cases continue to surge in Idaho, and the state’s ability to keep pace with demand is once again coming into question.

During a press conference, Idaho health officials voiced concern about the ability of hospitals and clinics to keep up with what officials are calling Idaho’s fifth COVID-19 surge, even announcing the closure of some urgent care centers on weekends to manage demand.

In the Magic Valley, the effects of the omicron-fueled surge have yet to be felt as severely as in other parts of the state. Speaking with multiple urgent care facilities in the area tell KMVT the impacts have begun.

All facilities we spoke with are reporting some COVID-19 positives amongst staff, leading to employees working longer hours and extra days.

The result is longer waits for patients, and some facilities closing early to keep up with the demand of each day. State officials warn these trends may begin to result in a lack of available treatment at urgent care centers and hospitals.

“If you’ve been on the fence on getting vaccinated, now really is the time,” said Dr. Laura McGeorge of St. Luke’s Internal Medicine. “Our rescue therapy, right now, in the outpatient setting is going to be extremely limited because of omicron.”

Dr. McGeorge had a consistent message that vaccines in the arms of Idahoans will continue to be the best way to keep people healthy and our healthcare system stable.

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