Large increase in COVID-19 cases puts strain on local hospitals, Vigo County health officials say

Wabash Valley COVID-19 updates

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) – For the second time since the start of the pandemic, Wednesday evening, the Vigo County Board of Health met face-to-face. This comes as the county is seeing large increases in COVID cases.

Between November 8 and 14, the Vigo County Health Department reported more than 1,165 positive COVID-19 cases. This is the most since the start of the pandemic.

“Our community numbers continue to go up exponentially. We’re seeing that from gatherings, we’re seeing that from a variety of different places,” said Dr. Darren Brucken, Vigo County Chief Medical Officer.

He says the increases the county is seeing is putting a strain on both Regional and Union hospitals.

“Our two hospitals are busier now with COVID patients than we were definitely were earlier on. We’re holding patients in the emergency room waiting on beds at times at both hospitals. We have more patients ventilated currently with COVID-19 than we did early on in this,” Brucken said.

During Wednesday’s meeting, Brucken also addressed the county preparing for the possibility to bring in refrigerated trucks for bodies in case of high death numbers.

“The refrigerated trucks got a ton of publicity, when in reality we have more dead bodies than places to put them so we have to do something, and part of our preparedness program is those refrigerated trucks,” Brucken said.

Brucken says the county health department is trying their hardest to fight the virus, and asks the community to do the same.

“We’re begging and pleading for people to please pay attention and wear a mask, wash your hands and stay away from people, stop congregations, stop preaching against masking and preaching against distancing, the things that are causing our community outbreak to be so high,” Brucken said.

The board says that they plan to meet again on January 20.

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