BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A Baltimore emergency room doctor said he’s “concerned” about the coronavirus patients he’s seeing because while the number of hospitalizations has declined, those who are coming into his emergency room are “very sick.”

Dr. Chandresh Shelat with Sinai Hospital said ER traffic isn’t slowing down and patients are coming in with a long list of problems, including COVID-19.

“It’s not what it was in April, so we have seen a decrease in the amount of COVID patients coming in, but the ones that are coming in are very sick,” he said.


Statewide, more than 69,000 Marylanders have tested positive for COVID-19, but the number of hospitalizations sits at just over 400. The number of positive test results is also down.

Baltimore resident Surinder Sachar said he’s seen some people loosening up when it comes to the virus.

“I think we are doing pretty well. I can definitely see that people are getting a little more lax,” he said.

Seven restaurants in Baltimore’s Canton neighborhood have temporarily closed in recent days after at least one worker at each tested positive.

As people head outdoors for summer activities, Shelat warns people need to take the virus seriously to avoid spreading it.

“If we don’t continue to social distance, wear masks, do the things that we were doing previously, washing hands, being vigilant, we may see an uptick in the cases,” he said.

For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ’s coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here.

Ava-joye Burnett

Comments (3)
  1. anonymous says:

    Part of that is because more people are being treated at home. Call your own doctor and describe non life threatening symptoms (but you are sick) and they will tell you to stay home & they may call in a prescription and will tell you to only go to the ER if more serious symptoms occur- even tho you may have the virus. They may send you for a test or not, they want people to stay home unless they are so sick their life is threatened. People who are not at greatest threat (like the elderly or those who already have serious health issues) are now being told to stay home and not go to the ER unless they are having trouble breathing.

    I got sick a few days after I had visited an elderly friend who got sick & was diagnosed w/ COVID a few days later & had to be hospitalized. I called my doctor as soon as I found out I had been exposed w/n the 1-2 week window and was told to stay home unless I got sicker. I didn’t, luckily, altho I was not able to get tested. It is a myth they are easily available. I am under 30 and healthy so I did as told and I either had a mild care or else I just had a bad cold or the normal flu.

    People are told NOT to go to the ER if they are not that sick. My insurance really nails you on ER visits, so I am less likely to go.

    1. King Julian says:

      you are responsible for your own health , your doctor can not stop you from going to the doctor or the ER. if that’s what you are being told time to get a new one that cares about you

  2. Zee says:

    I have a high copay for an ER visit I would not go unless I was really sick. Like a lot of people my income has been impacted by it For some people right now the decision is economic more thn health

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