ROCHESTER, Minn. - The Mayo Clinic is issuing a community-wide plea ahead of Thanksgiving and asking everyone to think hard before gathering with anyone outside their household for the holiday.
Mayo Clinic Practice Executive Dean Dr. Amy Williams says there is some good news right now though. She says the Rochester area is below a 10% positivity rate which is the first time we’ve rates that low in this area in weeks.
She said, “Although we're still very high, three times the number of tests that we used to have back in the summer, we also are seeing a glimmer of hope in our positivity rates in the different regions.”
While that’s a step in the right direction Williams says the hospital is still preparing for a surge in cases that’s expected about two week from now.
That surge, of course, would likely be from people gathering together for Thanksgiving against the advice of health officials.
Currently Williams says Mayo Clinic has expanded the ICUs and general care beds to accommodate more patients but hopes, if the community cooperates with health guidance, there won’t be as great of a surge.
“All of us have traditions that we want to continue, and we're unable to this holiday season but by decreasing huge gatherings, by staying masked, by staying away from each other and social distancing, you are saving our communities, and possibly those in your family from getting COVID-19 and for some having bad outcomes,” said Williams. “I really encourage people, although it is a sacrifice, to celebrate the holidays with your household family and not extend.”
Mayo Clinic Florida and Arizona are also shifting staff around the entire health care system, including in the Midwest, so they are were they’re needed most to care for patients.