Tulsa Hospitals Prepare For Heat-Related Calls, Potential Rise In COVID-19 Cases

Wednesday, June 17th 2020, 9:28 pm
By: Sawyer Buccy

TULSA, Okla. -

Hospitals in the Tulsa area said they are ready to handle a surge in patients, whether it is from heat-related calls over the weekend or from COVID-19 cases, a few weeks from now.

Huge crowds are expected in downtown Tulsa this weekend and hospitals already have surge plans in place.

Since the pandemic started, hospitals have been having regular meetings to determine if they have enough PPE, ventilators, and staff members. They said if there is an increase in COVID-19 cases, they are prepared.

Tulsa hospitals started creating plans at the beginning of the pandemic, deciding what they would do if the number of COVID patients needing to be hospitalized started to surge.

Ascension St. John, Saint Francis, and Hillcrest all said those plans will continue to work if the community does see an increase in positive cases after this weekend. 

"We have refined our processes over the last 90 days or so. We feel well prepared for what we are handling today and what might come in the future," said Ascension St. John President Mike McBride.

Hillcrest released a statement saying, "as part of our preparedness efforts at the start of the COVID-19 response in March, we continue to meet daily to discuss and plan for bed availability, available PPE and staffing. We are prepared and able to accommodate an increase of COVID patients."

"Our volumes change by the day; they definitely change by the season. We are prepared just based on experience to deal with those types of surge situations," said Saint Francis Vice President Todd Schuster.

Health experts encourage anyone who is going to be around a lot of people this weekend to wear their mask, wash their hands and stay home if sick.