Sanford Health leaders say that as of Tuesday, the vast majority of those hospitalized with the virus are unvaccinated.
Sanford Bismarck Chief Medical Officer Dr. Chris Meeker says across the hospital’s four regions, 146 out of the 158 hospitalized have not received the vaccine. That’s 92%.
Among those in the ICU, 45 out of 47 are unvaccinated. That’s 96%. The 28 people on ventilators are all unvaccinated.
In Bismarck, there are 39 COVID patients, four of whom are being held in the emergency department because the hospital doesn’t have enough beds.
Meeker says despite the evidence, some patients and families still don’t want the vaccine.
“We do see patients who are remorseful that they didn’t get vaccinated. Unfortunately by the time they’re in the hospital, it’s not the appropriate time to get vaccinated. At the same time we also see people who deny the illness entirely and the families despite their loved ones doing poorly, also refuse to get vaccinated. So it really does create a strange divide,” Meeker said.
Meeker says the hospital saw seven deaths last week, and four deaths this week from COVID-19.