© 2022 Western New York Public Broadcasting Association

140 Lower Terrace
Buffalo, NY 14202

Mailing Address:
Horizons Plaza P.O. Box 1263
Buffalo, NY 14240-1263

Buffalo Toronto Public Media | Phone 716-845-7000
WBFO Newsroom | Phone: 716-845-7040
Your NPR Station
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Oishei Children's Hospital now accepting patients up to age 25, as COVID cases rise

Oishei Children's Hospital

Kaleida Health has raised the age limit to 25 for patients at Oishei Children's Hospital so younger patients can come across the bridge and free up beds at Buffalo General Medical Center.

The number of COVID patients in hospitals is rising again and hospitals are preparing. There have been cuts in inpatient elective surgery in some hospitals and concern about being ready for this surging second wave. Although treatments are better than they were in the spring, there are also changes in who is admitted and receives higher levels of care.

On Tuesday, Buffalo General had 79 confirmed COVID patients, including 21 in ICU. Millard Suburban had 56 cases, including seven in ICU.

Children's Chief Medical Officer Dr. Stephen Turkovich said hospital staff is familiar with treating COVID patients.

"We generally have anywhere from zero to two or three cases," he said. "Currently, we have three cases. One of them is an OB case. The other two are pediatric cases and each one of these positive patients is admitted to a negative pressure isolation room. So they are completely isolated. There's obviously full PPE on a pediatric med-surg floors and then our OB patient is on an OB floor in an isolation room."

Turkovich said there are Children's beds available because fewer kids are developing problems with flu or RSV, perhaps because so few are going to school with other kids and catching diseases. Last year, Children's was overflowing with RSV cases.

"Fortunately, as kids are not getting sick and not in school and not getting each other sick, we do have some significant capacity," said Turkovish. "So, unlike last year at this time when we were full and expanding the surge areas due to RSV, we have seen, I don't think actually, any RSV thus far this year and any flu this year. So the hospital has room and we're happy to accomodate our young adult friends."

Mike Desmond is one of Western New York’s most experienced reporters, having spent nearly a half-century covering the region for newspapers, television stations and public radio. He has been with WBFO and its predecessor, WNED-AM, since 1988. As a reporter for WBFO, he has covered literally thousands of stories involving education, science, business, the environment and many other issues. Mike has been a long-time theater reviewer for a variety of publications and was formerly a part-time reporter for The New York Times.
Related Content