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March 17, 2021

YNHH leaders: trends show vaccines working

Dr. Thomas Balcezak speaks to the media during a press conference March 17.

Officials with the Yale New Haven Health system reported Wednesday that its population of patients suffering from COVID-19 continues dropping, a trend they attributed to vaccinations.

Marna P. Borgstrom, CEO of Yale New Haven Health, said the system’s in-patient COVID population as of Wednesday was at 165.

Most of these are at Yale New Haven Hospital and Bridgeport Hospital, at 97 and 43 inpatients respectively, with the remainder spread between Greenwich Hospital, Lawrence + Memorial in New London and Westerly Hospital in Rhode Island.

Throughout the health system, 44 in-patients are in intensive care, and about half of those are on ventilators, according to Borgstrom.

“The great news is the vaccines appear to be working,” Borgstrom said. “Inpatients over 75 (years old) have been declining since they were eligible for vaccines, and we are seeing a similar trend for the over 65 population.”

YNHH also has not seen COVID patients who had been vaccinated previously, according to Borgstrom.

“With the prospect of more people getting vaccinated, we are cautiously optimistic,” Borgstrom said.

Gov. Ned Lamont reported Tuesday that 403 individuals were hospitalized with COVID-19 statewide, and there have been 7,799 fatalities to date.

Dr. Thomas Balcezak, executive vice president and chief clinical officer, said Wednesday the health system has administered about 160,000 vaccine doses. 

“I expect we will see a large drop in mortality, but complacency could be our enemy,” Balcezak said. “The more people can socially distance and adhere to mask wearing, the safer we will all be.”

“We are close to the finish line of this marathon, it would be a shame if we stumbled as we sprint to the end,” he added.

Starting Friday, state residents over the age of 45 will be able to get vaccinated.

The health system anticipates a large number of people in the new age group will try to schedule appointments in the first 48 hours.

“Be patient, we will get people in as fast as we can,” Balcezak said.

For more information on getting an appointment for a vaccine, click HERE

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