Empty Emergency Rooms

Across the nation, doctors are facing an eerie new concern in hospitals. Patients are ignoring serious health symptoms and not visiting emergency rooms due to fear of risking exposure to COVID-19. Many cases of heart attack and stroke are being caught in some instances too late. Health officials are worried that fear of the emergency room could lead to unnecessary deaths.

Emergency rooms across the country are reporting visits being down 30-50% compared to the previous year. According to Yale Medicine, recent hospital admissions for serious heart attacks have fallen by 38%. Dr. Yazan Khatib of First Coast Cardiovascular Institute addressed patient concerns in a recent Youtube video. He stated “We are seeing a lot of patients avoid going to the ER out of fear, even when they are having very serious symptoms.” He goes on to say that “We need to trust that the system has reinvented how to address all of our patients safely, without them worrying about COVID.” Taking care of your health is important. Symptoms of a medical problem should not be ignored. Ignoring these symptoms could lead to death or irreversible damage.

Know the Warning Signs:

According to the CDC symptoms of a heart attack include:

                        •  chest pain
                        • pain in the arm or shoulders
                        • pain in the jaw, neck, or back
                        • feeling weak or light-headed

According to the CDC symptoms of stroke include:

                        • sudden numbness or weakness in the face, arm, or leg
                        • sudden confusion
                        • difficulty speaking
                        • dizziness or lack of coordination

Medical treatment should be obtained immediately if you encounter any of these symptoms.


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