COVID-19 patients, 345 in all, filled about half of all the beds at NGHS hospitals on Jan. 8. Dozens of other patients were in the Emergency Department at the system’s Gainesville hospital waiting for a room. Some couldn’t even get in the ER. Even after one expansion after another throughout the pandemic — with tents and mobile units set up, a gym converted into a hospital ward and regular rooms into ICU space — it was too much.
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