As Ohio hospitals beds fill up, UH seeing increase in requests for transfer from farther away

Posted at 12:08 PM, Sep 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-17 12:22:55-04

CLEVELAND — With COVID-19 continuing to surge in Ohio, a lack of hospital beds statewide is now being felt locally as one Cleveland hospital system says it’s seeing an increase in the number of requests for transfer and an increase in the distance from which those requests are coming from.

University Hospitals released a statement to News 5 saying: “University Hospitals regularly receives request from other hospitals across the region and state for patients with high acuity and or specialized needs. UH has seen both an increase in the number of requests and distance from which requests for transfer have been coming. UH and other regional partners have been working to ensure local capacity is maintained while supporting those in need beyond Northern Ohio.”

In Ohio's Hospital Regions 2 and 5, which includes most of Northeast Ohio, excluding Erie and Huron counties, COVID patients are currently using 1,252 beds or 12.1% of the total beds available. Patients without COVID are using 6,996 beds, or 67.8% of the total, leaving 2,068 beds currently open, which is 20% of all hospital beds in the region.

There are 330 COVID patients in these regions' ICU units using 16.52% of the total ICU beds available. Non-COVID patients are using 1,235 beds — 61.84% of the total, leaving 432 beds open, which is 21.63% of those available.

Dashboard_ Hospitalization Overview (8).png
Data on hospitalizations, ICU admissions and ventilator use in Northeast Ohio's hospitals, as of Sept. 17, 2021.

The strain on hospitals comes from those who are unvaccinated and are being treated for COVID-19, hospital officials say.


Yesterday, the Columbus Dispatch reported that only 21 beds total were open in the Columbus area.

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