Allina Health is restricting visitor access to its facilities due to the current surge in COVID-19 infections.
The restrictions, which Allina refers to as “red visitor status” went into effect on Tuesday, January 11. A red visitor status means that no visitors will be allowed, with limited exceptions.
The change comes after more than 100 staff members per day were removed from work because they either tested positive for the virus or were awaiting tests and results, according to a press release.
The release says the current surge of the virus has “sharply increased” pressure on communities and on the already-strained healthcare system, which is already dealing with staffing shortages. “Allina Health has never seen a community illness impact patients and staff to the levels COVID-19 is currently,” the healthcare provider says in the release.
“The weariness among healthcare workers and the general public is profound,” said Hsieng Su, Allina Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Executive.
Su says models predict the Omicron variant will sharply spike later in January before declining. “We need everyone working together to get through this peak,” she said.