California Orders Surgery Delays As Virus Swamps Hospitals

Emergency medical technicians sanitize an ambulance strecher after transporting a patient at Los Angeles County + USC Medical Center in Los Angeles, Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2021. Los Angeles continues to see hospitalizations rise day after day, setting a new record Tuesday with almost 8,000 hospitalized and more than a fifth of those in intensive care units. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

(AP) — Hospitals in California are so swamped by the coronavirus that the state has ordered hospitals with available space to accept patients from others that have run out of intensive care beds. The public health order issued Tuesday could result in patients being shipped to Northern California from Southern California and the San Joaquin Valley, where 14 counties also were ordered to delay nonessential “and non-life threatening” surgeries. For much of the year, California managed to avoid a catastrophe. But now the virus is raging and California remains at or near the top of states with the most new cases per capita.


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