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At Capacity, Rural Kansas Hospitals Struggle To Find Room At City Hospitals

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Celia Llopis-Jepsen
Kansas News Service
Patient care hasn't stopped during the global health crisis but finding needed treatment for non-COVID cases is more difficult.

Smaller facilities in rural areas rely on city hospitals to have rooms and personnel available to accept transfer patients needing specialized care they can't provide.

Staffing shortages coupled with a global health crisis have made it difficult for rural hospitals in need of transferring patients to find availability at larger medical facilities.

"It's not beds and it's often not machines, but it's competent staff to care for patients," said Dr. Mike Malin, medical director at Miami County Medical Center.

Prior to the pandemic it was rare to run into limited transfer availability at multiple hospitals but it has been a common theme over the last few months according to Dr. Malin.

When I host Up To Date each morning at 9 a.m., my aim is to engage the community in conversations about the Kansas City area’s challenges, hopes and opportunities. I try to ask the questions that listeners want answered about the day’s most pressing issues and provide a place for residents to engage directly with newsmakers. My email is steve@kcur.org.
Elizabeth Ruiz is a freelance producer for KCUR’s Up To Date. Contact her at elizabeth@kcur.org or on Twitter at @er_bentley_ruiz