- NYPD’s attempt at positive Twitter outreach campaign proves to be an epic fail
- Michigan man among first in U.S. to get ‘bionic eye’
- JetBlue pilots vote to unionize; 2 previous attempts failed
- Pentagon plans to replace flight crews with ‘full-time’ robots
- Navy’s military dolphins may meet Putin’s porpoises in Black Sea
- Forget the Porsche — it’s the guy with the Prius that attracts the ladies, poll shows
- Fired Russian Facebook CEO says site has fallen in the hands of pro-Putin supporters
- Sen. Boozman of Arkansas has emergency heart surgery
- Brazil embraces drones to save the Amazon rain forest
- Teen stowaway shows holes in vast airport security
War casualties overflow Walter Reed hospital
Officials at Walter Reed Army Medical Center are referring some outpatients to nearby hotels because casualties from operations in Afghanistan and Iraq have overloaded the hospital’s convalescence facility.
“We have an informal agreement with any number of hotels in the area. If we come to this point, they will take [patients] for us,” said Walter Reed spokesman Jim Stueve. “They’re very supportive and cooperative when we need that assistance.”
Mr. Stueve could not specify how many soldiers are in hotels, but said Walter Reed is referring about 20 patients or their relatives to hotels each day. Hotels in Silver Spring, just across the D.C. line, offer discounted rates for outpatients and their families, and the military pays the bill.
However, the hotel arrangement has not compromised the quality of care for incoming wounded, Mr. Stueve said.
“The staff is highly motivated to get these troops mended and on their way,” he said.
A hospital spokeswoman said: “We haven’t turned away any injured soldiers. We are treating all of them.”
The Army hospital and its convalescence facility, Mologne House, are at maximum occupancy capacity, with 96 percent of their outpatient beds filled with war wounded.
Walter Reed has been at maximum capacity since Operation Enduring Freedom began in Afghanistan in 2001, Mr. Stueve said, adding that the hospital’s 3,900 staffers have “put in a substantial amount of overtime.”
Before Enduring Freedom, the hospital’s occupancy rate had held steady at 83 percent for five years.
“We haven’t been average here for well over a year. We’ve been really busy. They’ve been rolling in here real regular,” Mr. Stueve said.
The Mologne House is a 280-bed facility for outpatients who need continued care or rehabilitation, as well as their families.
“Anybody who comes here and wants to stay there can’t,” said a hospital spokeswoman.
The hospital has 40 of 250 beds available for inpatients, but must continually open beds for new arrivals from Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany or the U.S. Naval Hospital in Rota, Spain.
“We have flights coming in almost every night from Landstuhl, so you don’t book that sucker up solid so when you have your No. 1 priority come in, you say, ‘You can’t stay here,’” Mr. Stueve said.
Feds who send arms against ranch families betray American values
- CARSON: When government looks more like foe than friend
- Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy hailed as patriot, renegade
- Tactical advantage: Russian military shows off impressive new gear
- IRS revokes conservative group's tax-exempt status over anti-Clinton statements: report
- America is an oligarchy, not a democracy or republic, university study finds
- ORTEL: Putin sees opportunities as Obama turns away
- Inside China: Marine's comment on islands draws sharp Chinese response
- Supreme Court upholds Michigan affirmative action ban
- Michelle Obama: Obama family Sundays are more for napping than church
- Bonuses given to IRS employes who owed back taxes
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.