Missing Social-Distancing Data Delays Modeling for COVID-19 Hospital Surge

Middletown Township Committee members practicing social distancing on TakeoutThursday

But health commissioner says hospitals will be able to handle coming spike in demand for critical care

By Jon Hurdle, NJ Spotlight

New Jersey hasn’t yet been able to model an anticipated surge in demand for hospital capacity for COVID-19 patients because it doesn’t have data on the effects of social distancing, but there are signs that hospitals will be able to cope, according to the state’s Commissioner of Health, Judith Persichilli.

The state’s health officials have been using CHIME, a tool for COVID-19 hospital capacity planning, which Penn Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania issued in mid-March. The tool, which has been made available to health care providers in 150 countries via open-source software, allows users to input data including the percentage of infected patients who have been hospitalized; the number of patients currently hospitalized, and the population a hospital system serves.

The resulting model also relies on the degree to which social distancing has reduced social contact, and that data wasn’t yet available, Persichilli said at Gov. Phil Murphy’s Friday briefing on the pandemic.

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Posted: March 30th, 2020 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County News, New Jersey | Tags: , , , , | Comments Off on Missing Social-Distancing Data Delays Modeling for COVID-19 Hospital Surge