Intermountain Healthcare is preparing to postpone some surgeries because of rising COVID-19 cases

(photo courtesy Intermountain Healthcare) Hospital staff at Intermountain Medical Center in Murray care for patients with COVID-19 on June 9, 2020.

Intermountain Healthcare is creating surge plans that include delaying elective surgeries as coronavirus cases spike in Utah.

Utah hospitalizations shot up on Wednesday with 541 coronavirus patients admitted. Hospitals are overwhelmed — 84.6% of state ICU beds are currently full. Utah health officials have said if beds are 85% full the hospitals are basically at 100% capacity because of staffing levels.

Intermountain Healthcare said in a news release that surgeries that can be safely postponed could be delayed until after the coronavirus surge subsides. Intermountain says it will decide which surgeries to delay by balancing the needs of patients with the resources at each hospital.

“While this may be disappointing for some patients, it is a necessary and appropriate step given the sharp spike in hospitalizations for patients with COVID-19,” the release states.

Patients affected by the delays will be directly notified. Intermountain Healthcare will keep providing health care in emergency and urgent situations. In order to reduce coronavirus cases, Intermountain is asking residents to wear masks, social distance and limit Thanksgiving events to members of their households.