December 22, 2021 — “Hereford Regional Medical Center is experiencing an unprecedented need for emergency medical care and hospitalization. Our patients are seriously ill, including five critical patients. We have two in our intensive care unit who require mechanical ventilation. The remaining three need ICU beds. All of these patients are extremely sick with COVID-19 and are unvaccinated.

This elevated need for hospital care comes when there are international supply chain disruptions affecting our ability to obtain medications and supplies in a timely manner and when we are experiencing a shortage of nursing and other allied health professional staff.

While COVID-19 is an evolving virus, what is clear is that being fully vaccinated, including receiving a booster shot, is the best defense against infection and serious illness.  The Omicron variant is the latest threat posed by this virus, but we are still dealing with the Delta variant as well. Any member of our community who remains unvaccinated threatens not only their own health but that of other community members as well.

According to the protocols dictated in our internal operations plan that we have in place precisely to help us continue to meet patient needs under challenging circumstances, we are waiving usual staffing patterns and conserving supplies and medications. We are not accepting transfers of patients from other hospitals.

We review our patient census, staffing, and supply availability every 24 hours to determine if we can resume operations as normal or need to continue operating under emergency standards. We are also working with the state to help us find supplemental staffing and critical drugs and supplies that are in short supply.

Hereford Regional Medical Center remains open and ready to care for our community’s medical needs, no matter what they are. But, we ask that the everyone do what they can to reduce their own health risks, including getting vaccinated against COVID-19 and the flu.”