Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

News

Riverside County Is Calling In Federal Support To Treat COVID-19 Patients

5f0f9cc021ab3e000af8aa15-eight.jpg
Newly reported cases in Riverside County as of July 14.
LAist relies on your reader support, not paywalls.
Freely accessible local news is vital. Please power our reporters and help keep us independent with a donation today during our fall member drive.

Several hospitals in Riverside County are looking to the federal government for backup staff to treat a surge in COVID-19 patients. One hospital in Rancho Mirage, Eisenhower Health, is scheduled to receive around 20 current military personnel, including doctors, nurses and respiratory technicians tomorrow.

According to Dr. Alan Williamson, chief medical officer of Eisenhower Health, much of the regular hospital staff is seasonal — doubling in size during the winter months to support “snowbirds” staying in their local second homes.

He explained:

“Typically this time of year things would be quite slow in the hospital, so we don’t have those staff readily available for taking care of a sudden surge of patients.”

The bottom line: While Eisenhower Health still has enough beds, ventilators and personal protective equipment (PPE), the hospital has essentially no staff to treat new patients.
Support for LAist comes from

Bruce Barton, director of Riverside County's Emergency Management Department, said one other county hospital has been approved to receive additional staffing and four others have requested, but not yet been approved, for help.

So far, he said, the northwest region of the county, including the city of Riverside and Moreno Valley, and the desert region are suffering the most from staffing shortages.

But Barton is optimistic about the future. “It’s been long, but the morale of the team is very good. We’re dealing with what’s in front of us every single day,” he said.

OVERALL LOOK AT RIVERSIDE COUNTY NUMBERS:

Here's a look at longer-term trends in the county. To see more, visit our California COVID-19 Tracker and choose Riverside or any other California county that interests you. These numbers are current as of Tuesday, July 14:

Support for LAist comes from
5f0f9d9021ab3e000af8aa1a-eight.jpg
5f0f9d90529597000da79306-eight.jpg

Our news is free on LAist. To make sure you get our coverage: Sign up for our daily coronavirus newsletter. To support our nonprofit public service journalism: Donate now.