DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — With many hospitals throughout the state facing a surge of COVID hospitalizations, many people have wondered, how are trauma patients that are rushed to the emergency room being treated?

According to Dr. Don Williamson the President and CEO of the Alabama Hospital Association, COVID is negatively impacting the ability of front-line medical professionals to provide care for a number of emergencies. He said there have been plenty of patients transferred out of state because there weren’t enough facilities available.

“We are seeing the challenges associated now with COVID, it is getting very, very difficult, if not impossible to arrange all the transfers that need to happen,” Williamson said.

Dr. Williamson wants to remind the community, emergencies such as heart attacks and car accidents still occur every single day and every single COVID hospitalization makes it more difficult to provide care to those patients.

“The system is in great jeopardy of locking down and making transfers essentially impossible,” Williamson said. “Yesterday we had negative 53 ICU beds.

Williamson fears the state of Alabama is facing a real crisis that could become much worse if not enough people get vaccinated or start wearing a mask in the coming weeks.

“Physicians are growing increasingly frustrated and nurses too,” Williamson said. “Frankly angry. This did not need to happen, we did not need to be here but we have chosen to be here because enough people did not get vaccinated.”

Dr. Williamson said the only way to reverse this trend and get everyone the care they need is to get vaccinated and wear a mask. He said these two simple things can go a long way in our fight against the coronavirus.