Hospital beds at CentraCare and Carris Health, and across the state, are full. Daily, staff at CentraCare struggle to find beds for critically ill patients. The emergency room at CentraCare – St. Cloud Hospital is packed with patients who need to wait hours for care they desperately need. CentraCare clinical teams are exhausted. Staffing was a challenge before the pandemic, and now it’s much tougher. Sadly, people who love healthcare are even leaving the profession. This pandemic is not over and in many ways it is worse.   

"We have been working for more than 20 months to care for you, your families and friends during this pandemic. We are committed to helping every patient who needs us – a responsibility that has been much harder lately," Ken Holmen, MD, CEO and President of CentraCare.

The number of patients with COVID-19 has a ripple effect on the entire health care system, making it very difficult to find beds for patients with other health issues.

"We couldn’t have made it through the early pandemic without our community’s support, and we ask for your help again – when we need it most," Holmen said.

How can the community help?

  • Please get vaccinated. Vaccines are our best defense against this virus. They are proven safe and effective in reducing COVID-19 illness, keeping people out of the hospital, and preventing death. They have the potential to end the pandemic, but only if more people get them.
  • Stop community spread by practicing social distancing and masking.
  • Come work for us. If you have any health care experience or licensure, and would be willing to return to work or volunteer, please consider it.
  • If your situation is not an emergency, please use other care options. This will help open beds for patients who truly need one. You can:
    • Visit a CentraCare eClinic online at centracare.com/eclinic,
    • Schedule same-day appointments with your primary care provider,
    • Speak with a CentraCare Connect nurse by calling 320-200-3200, or
    • Visit an urgent care near you.
    • If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 9-1-1, or visit the ER.
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