BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Two Maryland hospitals are deactivating their COVID-19 crisis protocols and returning to “normal operations,” according to medical staff.
Anne Arundel Medical Center and Doctors Community Medical Center plan to return to a “full surgical schedule as soon as possible,” medical staff said on Thursday.READ MORE: Maryland Weather: Warm & Dry Fourth Of July Forecast
The move comes on the heels of Gov. Larry Hogan’s end to the state of emergency in Maryland.
Hogan declared a state of emergency on Jan. 4 due to the increasing number of COVID-19 cases. He announced the end of the emergency during his State of the State speech on Wednesday.
During the state of emergency, Anne Arundel Medical Center and Doctors Community Medical Center pivoted to crisis standards of care.
The two hospitals saw a 320% increase in COVID-19 patients between Nov. 1, 2021, and early January, according to data released by Luminis Health on Jan. 4, 2022.
At that point, hospitalizations statewide had surpassed 3,000, reaching their highest point since the start of the pandemic, according to the Maryland Department of Health.
The shift to “crisis standards of care” protocol prompted the medical centers to postpone surgeries.
But now, those surgeries can ramp up again, according to medical staff.READ MORE: 1 Killed In Fourth Of July Shooting In Southeast Baltimore, Police Say
Luminis Health CEO Victoria Bayless said on Thursday that medical staff had noticed the number of COVID-19 patients had not been exceeding the health care resources available to the community.
Hogan had protected some of those resources by signing a pair of executive orders—the first empowering the Maryland Department of Health to regulate hospital staffing and resources, and the second activating 1,000 Maryland National Guard members to shore up the state’s EMS ranks.
Maryland National Guard soldiers set up 20 new testing sites at hospitals across the state—some of them were near the medical centers.
Deneen Richmond, president of the Luminis Health Doctors Community Medical Center, said she was grateful that Hogan and the Maryland National Guard had set up COVID-19 testing sites near Luminis Health campuses in Annapolis and Lanham during the crisis period.
But now that period is over, Dr. Sherry Perkins, president of Luminis Health Anne Arundel Medical Center said.
“We encourage all patients to seek the care they need,” Perkins said. “The hospitals are safe, ready and open for those requiring emergent care. Those with non-emergent conditions should seek care from their primary care providers or urgent care centers. In addition, consistent follow up with your care provider is important.”
Luminis Health staff are continuing to assess visitor restrictions. Both hospitals continue to maintain face mask mandate is still in effect in order to keep patients, employees, and visitors safe, according to medical staff.
Hogan informed Marylanders during his speech on Wednesday that they must learn to cope with COVID-19.MORE NEWS: New Poll Reveals How Parents Are Doing On Fireworks Safety
“My message to you tonight is that we must all learn to live with this virus, not to live in fear of it,” he said. “We can’t let it continue to dictate how we live our lives.”