The lack of sufficient staff and the recent rise in COVID-10 deaths made life hard for some of the New York City hospitals.
Sources said due to the two factors mentioned above there is a backlog at the city Medical Examiner’s office.
The same source added that NYC hospitals are scrambling to cope with the recent surge in COVID-19 fatalities across the city — with some shifting their dead patients between facilities as the ME’s office has been overrun.
“The whole hospital system is at capacity with patients and, of course, that includes the morgues,” one person familiar with the situation revealed.
Another source from the NYC Health + Hospitals, which operates the city’s public health care system, revealed they have so far been able to manage deaths by moving them from one hospital to another and getting additional storage units.
Also, a hospital official also said the Medical Examiner’s Office was “slammed” because it doesn’t have enough staffers to identify and transfer all the bodies in its morgues.
Meanwhile, it was learned that the Greater New York Hospital Association also held a private, online webinar Wednesday to discuss “mitigation measures” to deal with delays in “decedent retrieval” by the ME’s Office and funeral homes.
In the webinar, GNYHA, which represents more than 160 hospitals and health care systems statewide, cited “numerous factors, including an increase in citywide fatalities and unprecedented staffing shortages brought on by the current Omicron wave.”
Moreover, the latest data from the local health department state that the daily deaths from COVID-19 surged from 65 on Jan. 1 to 128 on Jan. 11, with incomplete data showing a decline to 55 on Sunday.