JEFFERSON CITY — Hospitals and the condition health and fitness office are asking the general public to prevent coming to unexpected emergency rooms for non-urgent treatment, as Missouri’s health treatment infrastructure strains less than the hottest COVID-19 surge spurred by the omicron variant.

Clients with “serious illness or a existence-threatening ailment” — which include chest discomfort, stroke indications and physical trauma — should proceed to seek crisis services as common, the Division of Health & Senior Solutions and Missouri Hospitals Association explained in a joint news release Monday.

But all those in search of “regime treatment,” these as COVID-19 screening or “ailments ideal to urgent care or principal care,” ought to go to those people companies alternatively than the crisis space.

“Sad to say, the affected person surge — from demand from customers for COVID-19 tests and treatment, as effectively as other typical seasonal raises in healthcare facility utilization — is triggering clinic (emergency division) waiting around rooms to fill up,” claimed Jon Dootlittle, president and CEO of the hospitals’ affiliation. This generates a bottleneck because just about every individual have to be screened and taken care of underneath federal legislation, irrespective of the seriousness of their issue.”

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Roughly 3,800 men and women are hospitalized with COVID-19 in Missouri as of Monday, according to the office. Of people hospitalized, 681 are in intensive treatment models.