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Gainesville hospital to receive National Guard support as COVID-19 surge continues
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The ambulance entrance at the Northeast Georgia Medical Center is filled Wednesday, Aug. 18, 2021, at the emergency room. At one point there were a reported nine ambulances lined up with patients. - photo by Scott Rogers

A National Guard team will be deployed to Northeast Georgia Medical Center in Gainesville to help with staffing shortages as COVID-19 cases continue to rise across the state.

In a press release, Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp announced that Northeast Georgia Medical Center was one of 10 hospitals where National Guard teams will be deployed. A spokesman with the governor’s office said the Guard generally sends a team of 10 to area hospitals. 

The announcement comes as nurses and doctors at Northeast Georgia Health System continue to grapple with an increasing number of COVID-19 cases. The system reported 240 COVID-19 positive patients on Aug. 23. Doctors have said the January hospitalization record of 355 COVID-positive patients is expected to be surpassed by early September.

In all, 105 personnel will be deployed throughout the 10 hospitals in the state. 

“These guardsmen will assist our frontline healthcare workers as they provide quality medical care during the current increase in cases and hospitalizations, and I greatly appreciate General Carden and his team for their willingness to answer the call again in our fight against COVID-19,” Kemp said in a statement.