MEMPHIS, Tenn — A viral social media post said many of the hospitals in our area were "closed for admissions" and out beds., our Verify Team worked to get to the bottom of the claim.
The document supposedly came from a source in the hospital industry, it has been shared over and over with warnings from people to like stay at home and stay safe.
It looks like a list of Memphis Area hospitals. It says for example. Baptist Memphis, Desoto and Collierville were all "closed to admissions." It goes on to says Methodist hospitals are listed at critical advisory or no ICU and that there are no beds at Regional One or St. Francis.
So are hospitals closed to for admission? Our source for this story is Stacy Hammett, Telehealth Administrator for Baptist Healthcare.
"Most of our hospitals are pretty full but we are not closed ever and patients can always come into our emergency department or come in via ambulance," said Stacy Hammett, Baptist Telehealth Advisor.
Hammett said the emergency rooms remains open . You may have to wait a while to be seen and if you need to be admitted, with hospitals nearing capacity you may have to wait to get a room but Hammett says you will get help if you go to the hospital.
Hammett said she don't know where this list came from or when it was created but pointed out "closed for admissions" is not a term those in the healthcare industry use in an official capacity.
Hammett says the term "critical advisory" is used and it has to do with hospital transfers.
"We are sometimes not accepting transfers from other hospitals so if we are full and we have no place to put a patient and the ED is full. We wont take transfers from other hospitals but if a patient walks into an emergency room or comes in in an ambulance we are going to take care of them," said Hammett.
Hammett said Monday afternoon. Baptist Memphis, Desoto and Collierville were on critical advisory status. But Hammett points out, hospital capacity is fluid and always changing. Capacity has been hovering at more than 90 percent for some time now and that probably wont change anytime soon.
"The hospitals are open yes we are full yes we are tight. There is not a lot of bed and not of resources. There are a lot of sick people as well as sick nurses and sick doctors that are catching this disease," said Hammett.
In addition to Baptist, St. Francis Hospital released a statement saying " We have the Capacity, appropriate supplies and the ability to operationalize additional beds within the hospitals to increase our capacity."
Methodist hospital also commented about the social media post saying" The advisory status does not impact the ability to accept and treat patients at our facility. "
The bottom line, we can't verify where this list came from but hospitals officials say despite what it said, though the emergency rooms are busy. They are open for business.
"I don't people staying at home thinking that the hospitals are closed when they are really sick enough that they need to come to the hospital," said Hammett.