By Karen Morfitt

GREENWOOD VILLAGE, Colo. (CBS4) — The number of COVID-19 patients needing to be hospitalized has reached an all-time high in Colorado, and the Colorado Hospital Association is preparing for what’s next.

(credit: CBS)

“We all have the same worry, just making sure we have everything that’s needed,” Angela Brocklesby with HealthOne said.

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After 30 years of working as a nurse, Brocklesby now runs the Transfer Center for their entire health system.

“It’s like the air traffic control for patients, so what we do is we assist patients getting into our hospitals and out of our hospitals,” she said.

As hospitalizations continue to climb, the Colorado Hospital Association is using that model to formulate a statewide Combined Hospital Transfer Center.

“We are reaching a potential tipping point for our health care system and we want to make sure our system and our workers are protected,” spokesperson Cara Welch said.

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The CHTC will be a centralized resource where hospitals can coordinate patient care, should one start nearing capacity or reach capacity.

It will help rural areas in need of more critical care space and larger centers looking to release patients.

“If the urban hospitals are having trouble stepping patients down or if they need to transition patients that may not need ICU bed space, we can move those patients out to the rural communities,” she said.

Brocklesby says we have reached a point where its not only the best option, but the only one.

“We are all in this business for the same reason we want to take care of patients and we have to work together to be able to do it when you get to this level of volume no one should be working on an island,” she said.

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Karen Morfitt