Eerie Emptiness Of ERs Worries Doctors: Where Are The Heart Attacks And Strokes?


Across the country, ER volumes are down about 40% to 50%, says Dr. William Jaquis, president of the American College of Emergency Physicians.

“It was very scary, because it was so quiet,” says Dr. David Tashman, medical director of the ER at USC Verdugo Hills Hospital in Glendale, Calif., about the early days of the outbreak.

“We normally see 100 patients a day, and then you know, overnight, we were down to 30 or 40.”

One study collected data from nine hospitals across the country, focusing on a crucial procedure used to reopen a blocked cardiac artery after a heart attack. The hospitals performed 38% fewer of those procedures in March, compared with previous months.

At Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, Dr. Malveeka Sharma has tracked a 60% decline in stroke admissions in the first half of April compared with the previous year.

Nationally, 911 call volumes for strokes and heart attacks declined in March through early April, according to data collected by ESO, a software company used by emergency medical service agencies. – READ MORE

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