Beebe Healthcare Lewes campus

Beebe Healthcare in Lewes, Del.

Effective Tuesday, Sept. 14, Beebe Healthcare is pausing elective surgical procedures requiring an overnight stay in the hospital, out of an abundance of caution, due to an increase in COVID-19 hospitalizations, representatives announced on Monday.

“Beebe leadership is making this decision to continue providing safe, high-quality care to the influx of patients requiring hospitalization due to COVID-19 and unrelated serious medical issues,” they said. “The number of community members hospitalized as a result of COVID-19 infection has continued to rise. Greater than 95 percent of hospitalized COVID-19 patients are either unvaccinated or partially vaccinated.”

Beebe joins TidalHealth Peninsula Regional in Salisbury, Md., in pausing such procedures due to the surge in COVID-19 cases and the demands placed on hospitals and staff as a result. TidalHealth paused its elective surgeries requiring an overnight stay as of Monday, Sept. 13, for a period of at least two weeks.

Beebe representatives said they will continually monitor the fluid surge and will resume elective surgeries requiring a hospital stay as the situation requires. Beebe is working closely with surgeons to ensure that patient care is prioritized as best as possible, they said. Patients whose elective surgeries are paused will be contacted by their surgeon’s office.

Beebe representatives again strongly urged everyone to get vaccinated, noting that the COVID-19 vaccine is free and readily available throughout the state.

“The vaccines are effective in preventing serious illness and death, and getting vaccinated is the most important thing you can do to protect yourself and others. The delta variant causes more infections and spreads faster than earlier forms of the virus that causes COVID-19.”

Some data suggests that the delta variant may cause a more severe illness than previous strains in unvaccinated people, according to the CDC.

“At this time, as we build the level of vaccination nationwide, we must also use all the prevention strategies available, including masking indoors in public places, to stop transmission and stop the pandemic,” said Dr. David A. Tam, MD, MBA, FACHE, president and CEO of Beebe Healthcare. “Everyone who is able, including fully vaccinated people, should wear masks in public indoor places.”

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