Northern Idaho may send new virus cases to Seattle, Portland

Posted at 8:26 AM, Oct 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-22 10:26:40-04

COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho — Health officials say people with COVID-19 in Northern Idaho soon may have to be sent to Seattle or Portland, Oregon, because the region’s hospitals are nearing capacity.

Kootenai Health hospital said in a statement Wednesday that their hospital is at 99% capacity for patients that need medical or surgical care. As of Wednesday morning, Kootenai Health had 31 COVID-19 inpatients and 11 required critical care.

Chief Physician Executive Karen Cabell told KREM the hospital nearing capacity at its current levels is “unprecedented."

Idaho is seeing its largest coronavirus spike since the pandemic began, with newly reported cases increasing statewide by 46.5% percent over the past two weeks.