MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — After a major slowdown, emergency departments around the Twin Cities are now seeing extremely high numbers of patients.

WCCO found out what’s happening and what to know if you need to know.

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As of late, more people have been going in to the ER. Take Children’s Minnesota for instance.

Scott Elsbernd manages patient care at the Children’s Minnesota Emergency Department.

“We kind of almost overnight went from seeing around 50 to 60 kids a day to all of the sudden seeing 130, 140 kids a day,” he said. “So we’re seeing volumes that we’re accustomed to seeing what we call ‘surge,’ which is our winter respiratory season.”

The patient care manager says staff is working hard and fast. A sharp increase in RSV cases means they’re having winter-like numbers in the already busy summer.

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“More kids are out and about in the summer as more families traveled up north or went to the cabin, are seeing families, have a Fourth of July, I think we are slowly just starting to see some of those viruses now take hold in the community,” he said.

And for adults, Aimee Jordan of Fairview tells WCCO they are slammed, too, between COVID patients, delayed surgeries and a staff shortage.

Hennepin Healthcare spokesperson Christine Hill says their emergency beds are extra full because of more COVID cases, more summer trauma cases and they are short on staff, too.

Each of the health systems tells WCCO they want people to know: if you need emergency care, go in.

“What I would want your viewers and everyone to understand though is that we are ready, despite these increasing volumes,” Elsbernd said.

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The hospitals triage care, saying the sickest patients always get priority.

Susan-Elizabeth Littlefield