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Maine COVID hospitalization numbers reflect those hospitalized with and for the virus

This differs from states like Massachusetts which recently changed its reporting to show people hospitalized for COVID.
Published: Jan. 13, 2022 at 3:46 PM EST
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AUGUSTA, Maine (WABI) - The head of the Maine CDC says the state considers COVID hospitalizations as anyone who is in the hospital with the virus.

This differs from states like Massachusetts which recently changed its reporting to show people hospitalized for COVID.

Dr. Nirav Shah says despite the reason for initially coming to the hospital, from a numbers perspective, the impact on the hospital is equivalent in many respects.

He says when it comes to hospitals under stress and strain, whether they are there with COVID or for COVID, they have to treat the patient with the same degree of care to make sure no one gets infected.

“That changes the course that a hospital has to take from an infection control perspective, from a staffing perspective. If you’re about to perform knee surgery on someone who tests positive for COVID, that may change the surgical plan, the anesthesia plan, so it still certainly has an impact,” Shah said.

Shah says despite the increase in non-ICU hospitalizations, it is too early to tell if the Omicron variant is milder than others.

He does say it’s definitely more contagious.

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