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Beacon CEO Kreg Gruber: “This can’t continue without consequences”

We are 18 months into this pandemic, and healthcare providers across our region continue to be there for every person who needs their care. In spite of having a vaccine that drastically reduces death and serious illness, we continue to care for people who are very sick and those who will die. It’s important you know where we stand right now, even though you may not heed our warning until you are personally affected. If we could convince you of one thing, it would be that vaccination matters.

We are extraordinarily challenged to provide care for everyone who needs it. Our staff is stretched further than normal and has been for months now. It can’t continue without consequences. People need surgeries for other injuries and illnesses but these critically important procedures are being delayed because of capacity and staffing issues due to COVID. You might be trying to get back to a normal life. However, let’s not sugar coat this: our hospitals are far from normal in part due to unvaccinated people contracting the virus and requiring care. The most frustrating part is that, with an abundance of safe, highly effective, life-saving vaccines, people are still dying right here. And it doesn’t have to be this way.

In the last few weeks we have seen a rise in our COVID patients from the early summer. We went from ONE COVID patient in July to 60, 70, 80, 90. The vast majority unvaccinated. We are glad that we are not seeing the numbers we did last winter, however, winter is coming. And we can’t afford to repeat the past. All of us at Beacon are here to help you, regardless of your vaccination status. Most importantly, we stand behind our teams, our people, and we all owe them our utmost respect and appreciation.

Kreg Gruber
Beacon Health System

About Heidi Prescott-Wieneke