Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta puts up surge tent as students return to classChildren's Healthcare of Atlanta had erected a surge tent at its Scottish Rite Hospital in Atlanta. Photo provided to Decaturish
This story has been updated.
Atlanta, GA — A reader noticed that Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta had erected a surge tent at its Scottish Rite Hospital in Atlanta.
A spokesperson for CHOA says the tent is intended to provide relief for the emergency department, which is anticipating an influx of patients as students return to school.
“As kids begin to return to school, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta has seen a significant increase in emergency department and urgent care center volumes due to respiratory illnesses, including RSV, flu, COVID-19 and the common cold,” CHOA spokesperson Allyson Wright said. “To address increased volumes, Children’s is encouraging parents to consider where to take your child when illnesses and injuries happen, and to contact your child’s doctor with questions.
CHOA has 319 licensed beds at Scottish Rite, Wright said.
“The tent is used as a low-acuity overflow space assembled to alleviate Emergency Department volumes and wait times but is not adding to our bed count. This tent is not serving as a COVID-19 testing site. The tent is located outside the emergency department’s front door in the valet area. Last year, the tent was used for a few months when we saw an increase in patient visits to the ED as well.”
The CDC additionally updated its guidance for K-12 schools. The agency is no longer recommending routine screening testing in K-12 schools. However, in areas with high COVID-19 community levels, schools and early child care and education programs can consider implementing testing.
Quarantine, social distancing and test-to-stay recommendations have also been removed. Masking is recommended at high COVID-19 community levels for all indoor areas, regardless of vaccination status.
Editor’s note: Following this story, CHOA contacted Decaturish to say that CHOA did not use a surge tent in 2021. This story has been updated to reflect that information.
Reporter Zoe Seiler contributed to this story.
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