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Pittsburgh children’s hospital sets up tent to handle surge of RSV cases

By KDKA Staff

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    PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — UPMC Children’s Hospital set up a tent so it can better handle the surge of RSV patients.

In a video, Children’s Hospital Emergency Department Director Dr. Raymond Pitetti says the hospital has seen a “huge increase” in the number of children coming into the ER in the past six to eight weeks. He says the vast majority of them have respiratory illnesses caused by RSV, which can be serious among children.

The hospital has set up a tent which Pitetti said can offer eight to ten more beds and allows the hospital to increase its resources and see more kids “in a timely manner.”

“If we start to see a major spike in the day and we have the resources to do it, we’re going to open up the tent and let kids in,” Pitetti said.

Pitetti acknowledged that wait times can “fluctuate” but that triage nurses will assess patients when they first come in and make the determination about whether the patient needs to be seen right away or can wait.

In one day at the end of October, the wait time for the Children’s Hospital ER was six hours.

Doctors say if your child is having RSV symptoms that lead to difficulty breathing, wheezing or the inability to eat, then it’s time to go to the emergency room.

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