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Penn Highlands Update

As more Pennsylvanians continue to get the COVID-19 vaccine, Penn Highlands officials said they’ve been able to reduce some of their operations.

“As more people get vaccines within our service area we have been able to decrease some of our COVID operations by reducing hours or actually shutting things down such as our inpatient COVID-units,” said Megan Bussard, Assistant Vice President of Penn Highland’s Physician Network.

Bussard said Penn Highlands currently has seven positive COVID-19 patients on the inpatient side of their health system.

She said these numbers are great compared to the spike in December where they had 80 COVID-19 hospitalizations and in April with 30.

Bussard also said they’re looking to expand their vaccine capabilities as they’ve already administered over 78,000 doses.

“We are trying to meet the needs of the working population and the school aged children at this point. We have started to have some night hours, evening hours and also schools have reached out to help us get within their walls to help get their students vaccinated,” she said.

With the CDC’s recommendations for fully vaccinated individuals to not wear a mask, Bussard said they haven’t seen a lot of patients getting sick.

But she said this mask recommendation does not apply for Penn Highlands, “We do just want individuals to know that that is not the case for health care sys this does not apply to hospitals and doctor’s offices.”

Bussard said they will still ask patients, visitors and staff to wear a mask in the hospital.

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