Doctors say the next two weeks will be critical in trying to turn the COVID surge around. Hospitalizations are expected to increase, but by how much, depends on everyday decisions by Americans. 

As cases spike throughout the state and country, health leaders hope new restrictions will be enough to slow the increase in hospitalizations and urge people to not have big Thanksgiving gatherings. 

“I understand everyone is tired of COVID and just want to see each other and just be with family but if we want to have Thanksgiving 2021, we have to be cautious in Thanksgiving 2020,” said Dr. Vidya Mony of Santa Clara Valley Medical Center. 

Health officials say about 12% of cases will translate into hospitalizations in two to three weeks. 

The increase can be seen at local hospitals. Santa Clara County hospitals had 87 covid patients in mid-October and on Tuesday, there were 151. 

In San Francisco, there’s a similar trend. On Oct. 18, there were 17 covid patients hospitalized and this week, 39 patients.

“I’ve gotten more calls today than in the last couple days,” said Dr. Anne Liu.

Liu is an infectious disease physician at Stanford Health Care and she said luckily, hospitals aren’t overwhelmed like some other states – yet. 

 “We have capacity now, we have medications. We have ppe, but things can change very quickly,” Liu said.

 She says it’s crucial people do all they can to slow the spread in the next two weeks. 

Wear a mask, and socially distance. 

“And if everybody started what they needed to do, and stuck with it and were really consistent with it all of the time starting from now, in a month there would be very few cases,” said Liu.

Though we haven’t reached the same hospitalization numbers as the summer peak, the amount of COVID patients at Regional Medical Center in San Jose has doubled in three weeks. 

There are more floors they can open if necessary, but nobody wants to get to that critical point.

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By Kelley Wheeler

Kelley Wheeler is a Metro reporter covering political issues and general assignments. A second-generation journalist, worked with all major news outlet, she holds a vast expeirience. Kelley is a graduate of USC with degrees in journalism and English literature. She is a recipient of Yale’s Poynter Fellowship in Journalism.

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