homepage logo

Lee deaths set one-day record

By CJ HADDAD - | Aug 19, 2021

Twelve patients in Lee Health’s care passed away Wednesday from COVID-19, the deadliest day the region’s healthcare leader has seen since the pandemic began.

“This is the largest single-day total since the start of the pandemic, and our hearts go out to the family and friends of those who lost their battle against this devastating disease,” said Lee Health spokesperson Jonathon Little in an email Thursday. “We are urging our community to take action so more lives are not lost. Get vaccinated, wash your hands, and wear a mask and socially distance when out in public.”

Individuals looking to become vaccinated can visit www.LeeHealth.org or call 239-343-0999 to schedule an appointment. The free vaccination clinic at Gulf Coast Medical Center in Fort Myers (13681 Doctors Way) is open Tuesdays and Fridays from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. A parent or guardian must accompany a minor.

By the numbers

As of Thursday morning, Lee Health had 598 COVID-19 patients isolated in system inpatient hospitals, six of whom are under the age of 18. From Wednesday to Thursday morning, Lee Health saw 95 new COVID-19 admissions and 59 discharges.

Census as of Thursday morning was at 96% of staffed operational bed capacity. Staffed operational capacity reflects the number of beds for which the hospital has adequate staffing, not the total number of beds within Lee Health hospitals. Overall bed capacity fluctuates hour to hour as the system discharges patients throughout the day who are ready to go home.

As of Thursday, 57% of ventilators and 4% of ICU rooms are available for use across Lee Health facilities.

As of Thursday, there were 62 COVID-19 patients on ventilators and 93 in the intensive care unit.

Since the start of the pandemic, Lee Health has reported 810 patient deaths due to COVID-19.

COVID-19 is a highly contagious viral disease. For most individuals, symptoms are mild. For a minority, the disease becomes a type of viral pneumonia with severe complications. Especially at risk are those who are older, those with underlying health conditions and the immune-compromised.

With the number of COVID- 19 cases again climbing due, in part, to the latest mutation of the virus, the CDC is recommending that even vaccinated individuals “maximize protection from the Delta variant and possibly spreading it to others” by wearing a mask indoors in public in areas “of substantial or high transmission.”

The CDC also recommends masks for those at high risk of serious illness from COVID, those with compromised immune systems, those who are older, and those with underlying medical conditions.

Vaccination is highly urged.

For more detail on Florida resident cases, visit floridahealthcovid19.gov.

To find the most up-to-date information and guidance on COVID-19, visit the Department of Health’s dedicated COVID-19 webpage. For information and advisories from the Centers for Disease Control, visit the CDC COVID-19 website. For more information about current travel advisories issued by the U.S. Department of State, visit the travel advisory website.

For any other questions related to COVID-19 in Florida, contact the Department’s dedicated COVID-19 Call Center by calling 1-866-779-6121. The Call Center is available 24 hours per day. Inquiries may also be emailed to COVID-19@flhealth.gov.

–Connect with this reporter on Twitter: @haddad_cj