Over 900 Mayo staff contract COVID-19 in last 2 week period; COVID-19 ICU at capacity

With virus numbers rising in the Midwest, Mayo Clinic is preparing for increasing hospitalizations while they are already being stretched thin.

ABC affiliate KAAL reports, there are a total of 32 ICU beds in the clinic’s General Medicine ICU dedicated for care of COVID-19 patients, and it is currently filled.

Clinic officials say they are in the process of adding more beds in the coming weeks. But general care beds are also needed because of the number of transfer patients.

The three things Mayo Clinic say it needs are staffing, space and supplies.

"All of our hospitals are really stretched, many are are absolutely full at this time and throughout Minnesota, we are seeing an increase of hospitalizations and the need to bring up more beds for patients," says Dr. Amy Williams, Executive Dean of Mayo Clinic Practice.

Dr. Williams says Mayo Clinic continues to be concerned with staff shortages as employees get exposed to the virus.

Over the last 2 weeks, Mayo Clinic has had 905 staff members newly diagnosed with COVID-19, which shows how widely spread the virus is in the communities in the Midwest.

Williams said that 93 percent of staff who contracted the virus did so in the community and that the majority of those who contracted the virus at work did so while eating in a break room with a mask off.

On Tuesday, Minnesota reported an additional 5,945 patients with COVID-19 and 26 deaths.