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Blizzard means no snow day for some
Sibley Hospital, a 328-bed acute care community hospital in Northwest Washington, also used volunteers to bring staff to the facility, said Sheilah Roy, Sibley’s director of public relations.
Children’s National Medical Center was fully staffed and operating both Wednesday and last weekend, according to Jacqueline Bowens, the facility’s executive vice president and chief government and external affairs officer.
She said that more than 400 staffers slept at the facility last weekend, and more did the same Tuesday night, to keep running the 283-bed facility that is the Washington area’s only free-standing pediatric hospital.
“Our team was phenomenal,” she said, pointing out many stayed over from Thursday to Monday. The hospital ordered 125 pizzas and 5,000 wings for the staff for Sunday night for the Super Bowl, she said.
Ms. Gibbs, the Alexandria Inova spokeswoman, said the emergency room in her 318-bed hospital was relatively quiet during the weekend storm but did see more patients in the days after as people started to venture out.
“The main thing we saw were slips and falls and a number of chest pains,” she said.
Mr. Parker said Inova’s Fairfax, Fair Oaks and Mount Vernon facilities did not experience significant snow-related injuries.
Besides Alexandria, the exception was Inova Loudoun Hospital a 183-bed acute-care community hospital in Leesburg.
“Inova Loudoun Hospital has seen a steady flow of snow-related injuries since the weekend storm,” Mr. Parker said, describing the injuries as “fractures from falls, strains and sprains from shoveling and one cardiac issue from shoveling.”
One such case elsewhere in the area did result in the first apparent snow-related fatality in the Washington region of an Annapolis high school custodian who fell Monday while clearing snow at the school.
Kelton Foote, a custodian at Broadneck High School since 1988, died after being taken to the hospital, said Bob Mosier, a spokesman for the Anne Arundel County Public Schools.
“He was at work helping to clean the walkways when he fell,” said Mr. Mosier, adding that he did not know what may have caused the fall.
In a statement, Superintendent Kevin Maxwell called Mr. Foote “an enormous and beloved presence at Broadneck High School who left a legacy of hard work and dedication to the school and its community. His ready smile, warm nature, and genuine laugh endeared him to students and staff alike.”
But regardless of whether hospital facilities are quiet or harried, its supply of blood-related goods needs constant replenishment.
The Red Cross said that the storm had resulted in a serious shortage in the supply of platelets, a vital blood component used to treat trauma victims and cancer patients.
About the Author
Ben Conery is a member of the investigative team covering the Supreme Court and legal affairs. Prior to coming to The Washington Times in 2008, Mr. Conery covered criminal justice and legal affairs for daily newspapers in Connecticut and Massachusetts. He was a 2006 recipient of the New England Newspaper Association’s Publick Occurrences Award for a series of articles about ...
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