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USF analysis shows social distancing preserves hospital bed availability

April 3, 2020 -

Researchers at University of South Florida say the demand for hospital beds for patients with Covid-19 in Hillsborough County could significantly exceed the availability of those beds, unless social distancing measures are widely followed for two months. Hillsborough County has a total of 4,060 hospital beds. Research by Thomas Unnasch, distinguished professor in the USF College of Public Health, shows that if individuals do not reduce the number of different people they come in contact with each day by at least 45 percent, there will be more than twice as many patients than total hospital beds by June. Data provided by state regulators shows current bed occupancy is 62 percent and occupancy in intensive care units is 66 percent in Hillsborough County. Patients hospitalized with the coronavirus spend between four and 10 days in the hospital depending on the severity of their infection. Unnasch has not done a similar model for Pinellas County. A 30-day Stay at Home order for all of Florida took effect Friday morning.


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